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John Ruch Posted by on August 9, 2016.

Atlanta reveals tunnel-drilling machine name finalists

Atlanta’s Department of Watershed Management has announced three finalists in its campaign to name a giant tunnel-drilling machine: Driller Mike, Peach Beast and Scarlett.

The names topped more than 700 submissions, and the public can vote to select the winning name at h2o4atl.com through Sept. 2. The machine will dig a 5-mile-long, 12-foot-wide tunnel to turn Atlanta’s Bellwood Quarry into a reservoir, a project slated to be finished in December 2018.

The finalist names and their origins, according to Watershed Management, are:

  • Driller Mike: a reference to Atlanta hip hop artist and activist Killer Mike. Multiple nominations, but as explained in a submission by Bryan Schroeder: “Killer Mike chews through words and raps like he’s got diamond-tipped teeth. A good role model for this drill, Driller Mike, to look up to!”
  • Peach Beast: In David Nixon’s nomination, he wrote: “The beast to help keep ATL and the Peach State green, healthy and safe. Plus it’s the beast that eats rock!”
  • Scarlett: A reference to Scarlett O’Hara, the Georgia plantation heroine of the Civil War-era novel and movie “Gone with the Wind.” Nominated by Kristen Vick, who in her submission said, “O’Hara, of course. How perfectly classic Atlanta.”