Friday, February 6, 2015

Legalize taprooms in Atlanta

Georgia has a rare opportunity to push through regulatory reform that would legalize taprooms. Scrapping these outmoded rules would provide a nice economic boost and allow the state to participate in the growing national trend towards small breweries that produce high-quality beer. Minnesota experienced rapid growth in this sector after passage of its "Surly Bill", and probably contributed to Minneapolis' notable improvement in coolness and desirability among young people.

Atlanta has a long way to go before it can lay claim to any status as a top-tier hipster city. Its disastrous sprawl and near-insurmountable transportation infrastructure poverty see to that. There's a unique set of structural economic challenges as well (very high unemployment, etc.) But there has been undeniable growth in investment and reputation within a small set of neighborhoods. Catching the beer trend thing would help sustain that upward trajectory. Opening up Atlanta's vast tracts of low-use industrial areas that cut through the urban form like craters would also help to increase tax revenue and improve aesthetics.

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