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Tyler Perry could be in the market for more Fort McPherson property

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Movie mogul wants to create a center for human trafficking victims, text messages indicate, but a public mixed-use piece is in jeopardy

A rendering shows a vast community of new construction and adaptive reuse development in front of a sea of trees. In the Background is the Atlanta skyline.
A rendering shows the northeastern corner of Fort Mac, facing downtown.
Fort Mac LRA

It seems 330 acres just wasn’t enough.

Movie mogul Tyler Perry is eyeing more property at the nearly 500-acre former U.S. Army base once known as Fort McPherson, according to an Atlanta Journal-Constitution investigation.

Perry bought the lion’s share of the property—330 acres—in 2015 and transformed it into a massive movie studio.

Text messages obtained by the paper from this spring indicate representatives for Perry had been chatting with officials from the Fort Mac Local Redevelopment Authority, a government agency formed by the State of Georgia to oversee the revamp of the 145 acres Perry doesn’t own.

The timing of these conversations is key: Perry’s people were getting cozy with the LRA around the same time the agency’s relationship with Fort Mac’s master developer Macauley Investments was hitting rocky ground.

Stephen Macauley, principal of Macauley Investments, told Curbed Atlanta in May that construction of the developer’s potentially $760 million overhaul could have begun this month or in early August.

Now, it appears, those plans are in jeopardy.

Macauley’s Fort Mac makeover would include residences, restaurants and retail, arts spaces, and more.

It’s unclear, though, whether Macauley will be able to ink a master development agreement with the LRA and move things forward.

Both parties believe the other is in default of their two-year-old development agreement, according to the AJC.

The text messages suggest Perry wants to create a center for human trafficking victims if he’s able to procure more Fort Mac property.

“That would be awesome!” Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms told Fort Mac LRA executive director Brian Hooker in one of the texts, per the newspaper’s findings.

Negotiations between Macauley and the LRA are now in limbo, and Perry’s 2015 deal affords him the right to purchase whatever land the agency is willing to sell.

If that happens, the LRA could owe Macauley millions to buy out the development agreement.