Source: Maria Saporta, Atlanta Business Chronicle
The Civic Center property may soon be back in play.
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed is exploring “reactivating” the 18-acre Civic Center site and possibly putting it back on the market.
“We will have an announcement about the future of the Civic Center by the end of this month,” Reed told Atlanta Business Chronicle on July 19. A proposal by Houston developer Weingarten Realty to redevelop the site as a $298 million mixed-used project collapsed last October.
Reed said he is exploring several options including a public-private joint venture with the Atlanta Housing Authority to build a significant affordable workforce housing development on the site.
The city is facing a loss of about 15,000 affordable housing units, partly due to Section 8 properties going off the market. Reed said he is spending his final months in office trying to make sure Atlanta is a city where everyone can live, including those who can’t afford the market rate for housing.
Reed said he currently is having “conversations” with AHA on the possibility of creating a significant affordable housing development on the Civic Center site, one of the largest land holdings the city currently owns.
“There’s a lot of energy around it,” Reed said, adding that he’s also exploring several other concepts that could be done in tandem with AHA.
In a telephone interview, Catherine Buell, the AHA’s president and CEO, confirmed AHA’s conversations with the mayor and the city’s development arm, Invest Atlanta.
“Our team is excited about the possibility,” Buell said. “We appreciate the fact that the city and Invest Atlanta would bring us into the discussion. That’s huge for us.”
But Buell added the partnership is still being defined. “We haven’t finalized the structure of the deal,” she said.
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