Good article with a few caveats
Good article and much to think about—
A couple of beefs however—
The folks crowding the Beltline are mostly intowners, I believe— It may be a nationally and internationally heralded system, but most suburbanites are barely aware if its existence, in my experience anyway.
Secondly, while I agree with your overall assessment of the place, there are apartments above the shops at Atlantic Station — and there is a sizable residential population— there are folks living above stores, its not just urban window dressing.
Lastly, some of the less glitzy places and businesses in existing mixed-use developments are exactly what you say we need— my dentist is in the base of Inman Park Lofts— and yes there is a UPS store next door— across the street from the local coffee coffee shop and around the corner from a neighborhood market and a very affordable restaurant or two.
I agree strongly that these developments need to have much more than high end restaurants (though I love that too) and deal with the real everyday needs of city life. As Atlanta develops, given the mixed-use paradigm— eventually these things will begin to grow together and as density grows transit will become more and more viable. This is a sea change from strip commercial and office development that bodes well for the future.