Inman Park's Haas Mansion, our most recent Over-The-Top-Property, was the also the inspiration for our Street of the Week. Waverly Way is a street that's only gotten better with age. It's witnessed the evolution of Inman Park from envied early suburb to decrepit slumber, and back again. Only this time, you'd be hard pressed to call it a suburb. Waverly Way's location in the heart of one of Atlanta's most cherished historic neighborhoods makes it a heart stopper for those who love a sense of place.
Waverly makes its way from its start at a verdant intersection with Euclid Avenue, past Springvale Park to the more industrial environs of Dekalb Avenue. Its meandering route was the deliberate design of the developer Joel Hurt, who envisioned Inman Park as a neighborhood with all the charms of the country that retained the conveniences of the city. This desire for green surroundings was also the impetus for the creation of Springvale Park. It was quite the transformation for this particular area, given that the ravine at the southern end of the park was the site where thousands lost their lives during the Battle of Atlanta only 25 years earlier.
Springvale Park became the pet project of Mr. Hurt, who had a passion for horticulture. Evidently his thumb wasn't sufficient, because in 1903 he hired the Olmsted Brothers to create a a solid plan for the park. Hurt couldn't have picked a more qualified firm; the brothers were the sons of Frederick Law Olmsted, the country's premier landscape architect. The talented duo drew up plans for some of Atlanta's most treasured green spaces, including Piedmont Park, Grant Park, and the linear park system in Druid Hills. Their ideas served as inspiration for the current incarnation of the park, with Crystal Lake restored as an especially scenic home for the neighborhood goose.
The original homes along this sun dappled street convey Hurt's vision of gracious rural living near the city center (the more innocent predecessor of sprawl), with their grand proportions and comfortable verandas. The street's seen a bit of change over the years, morphing into the architectural hodepodge that gives many neighborhoods in Atlanta their unique character. Styles to look for include Queen Anne, Folk Cottage, Foursquare, Colonial Revival, and Neoclassical Revival. One of my favorite features is the preservation of the original cobblestone in some of the driveways, which adds another layer of texture to the historic surroundings. Single family homes in Inman Park are regularly priced from $350,000 to $1.5M.