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Decatur Has a Fever, and the Only Prescription is More Retail

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Although Decatur government leaders and Cousins Properties have been in talks about redeveloping the Callaway Building site — a five-acre, parking-lot-intensive dead zone next to the historic square — since 2011, the two sides haven't reached common ground on what should rise there in the future. The latest setback for redevelopment came last week, when the Decatur commission unanimously rejected Cousins' plans for a mixed-use project, designed by Smith Dalia, with 361 apartments, 20,000 square feet of retail and 5,000 square feet of offices, the AJC reports. While Decatur's mayor conceded the project is "beautiful" and is "absolutely what the market is asking for," every city official insisted that it needs more retail. Next step: The commission will take at least a month to meet with the developer and discuss revisions.