Box 3, Folder 7, Document 33

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The Brookings Institution U


Visiting Scholar Programs
January 23, 1969

Mayor Ivan Allen, Jr.
City of Atlanta

City Hall

Atlanta, Ga. 30303

Dear Mayor Allen:

I want to thank you for the interview on urban renewal which I had
with you during my recent visit to Atlanta over the Christmas holidays.
Your summary wf what urban renewal is accomplishing in Atlanta ard some of
the problems it is encountering is most helpful in my project on the his-
tory of the program.

I also appreciate the discussions I had with Mr. Sweat, Col. Jones, and
Mr. Satterfield and other staff of the Housing Authority. I have just fin-
ished converting my notes to tape and find that these discussions, together
with the written materials furnished me, give me a current and comprehensive
view of the Atlanta urban renewal program.

Anyone who has been to Atlantaat different times over the last quarter
century, as I have, cannot fail to be impressed by the tremendous progress
that has been made in both the city's physical and social development. The
primzry role that you have assigned to urban renewal is therefore most
gratifying. This is particularly so in view of the attacks which have been
leveled against the program in the last several years.

The most recent is the chapter, "From Slum Clearance to Urban Renewal,"
in the report of the National Commission on Urban Problems, which has just
been released. I understand that this chapter was written personaily by
Senator Paul Dougias, chairman of the Commission. Unfortunately Senator
Douglas's attack is based in large part on a distorted and inaccurate
version of the legislative history of the program. My conclusion is based
on the opinions of others who participated in this history, my observations
over two decades of close participation in the legislative and policy devel-
opment of the program, and the review of events leading to the original
enactment in 1949 which I have just concluded as part of my project.

Programs like that in Atlanta ani the support they have fran the
community are undoubtedly better answers to that kind of criticism than
any attempts I or others can make to straighten out the record. So
I wish you and your associates continued success in your new efforts
which have just been announced.

Ss y yours, !
VISITING SCHOLAR PROGRAMS: Brookings makes its research faciliffes avgtlable to mee slengaged iff Heir owuprojeets Guest Scholars on leave from other
institutions pursue their own research. Federal Executive Fellows on hapqJ¥om fovertment ard Business Executive Fellows on leave from positions in private

employment engage in studies of public policy problems. Research Fellows from university graduate schools conduct predoctoral or/postdoctoral research in Washington.

John W. Shively

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