On December 19, 2014, Congress passed Public Law 113-291, which directed the National Park Service (NPS) to conduct a Special Resource Study for the historic former West Hunter Street Baptist Church, located at 775 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, SW, Atlanta, Georgia. The purpose of this special resource study was to gather information about the resources through historical research and public input, and then to report these findings to Congress. The study area incorporates the Hunter Street Baptist Church and associated resources on the block on which it stands. The site was assessed based on its association Reverend Dr. Ralph David Abernathy Sr., an internationally recognized leader of the modern civil rights movement.
The special resource study evaluated the potential for inclusion of the site based upon whether it met established new unit criteria. Applying these criteria consistently helps the National Park Service weigh the relative merits of potential park units and to ensure that only those most deserving of designation are included within the national park system.
In 2017, the NPS held public meetings in Atlanta, Georgia, to gauge public support and concerns for inclusion the church within the national park system. National Environmental Policy Act compliance has been achieved through a categorical exclusion since the study has no measurable environmental impacts.
While the NPS is conducting the study, the designation of national park units is ultimately the purview of Congress and the President. The purpose of the study is solely to evaluate the area and report to Congress.
The study was completed and transmitted to Congress in on March 21, 2022 for their consideration. The study document and transmittal letters are available at: https://parkplanning.nps.gov/WestHunterSRS_and_LetterstoCongress
Thank you for your interest in this special resource study.
National Park Service
100 Alabama Street SW, Bldg 1924
Atlanta, GA 30303
Welcome to the project website for the West Hunter Street Baptist Church Special Resource Study.