The evolution of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport – recently named the world’s most efficient airport for the 16th consecutive year – can be traced to its beginnings as a racetrack in 1909.
Built by Coca-Cola Founder Asa Candler, the site (aka Atlanta Motor Speedway) was primarily farmland and swampy pastures and chosen because it’s one of the few flat areas in the region. Candler organized the Atlanta Automobile Association, which assembled the 287-acre tract, and purchased it for $77,674.28.
Opening day was November 9, 1909. Thousands of spectators jammed the stands and seven world records were broken.