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Atlanta could lend public cash to keep Fort Mac-FDA deal moving forward

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A beef between a government agency and the master developer has jeopardized what could be a $760 million project

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.
The nearly 500-acre ex-Army base could be transformed into a diverse mixed-use community, proponents say.
Fort Mac LRA

Atlanta leaders have suggested using public funding to help float part of another major private development.

On Tuesday, an Atlanta City Council committee approved legislation to spend $1.3 million to keep the Fort Mac Local Redevelopment Authority—a government agency formed by the State of Georgia to oversee Fort McPherson’s potentially $760 million rebirth—alive, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution.

The point: To keep a deal moving forward that would see the aging U.S. Army base’s former forces command building turned over to the Food and Drug Administration.

Should the deal go through, the FDA would relocate its Midtown lab, along with 350 jobs.

Recent leadership shakeups within the LRA have jeopardized a plan to sell the building to developer Easterly Government Properties. Money from the city, the thinking goes, could keep the LRA afloat for another six months—perhaps enough time for the council to vote on the sale.

The Fort Mac LRA has witnessed its chairman, a board member, and the executive director resign in recent weeks, which, compounded by the fact that the agency is at odds with the project’s master developer Macauley Investments, seems to be setting the site’s overhaul behind schedule.

The $1.3 million lifeline still needs to undergo a full council vote, and the money would be repaid after the pending $17 million sale to Easterly, per the AJC.

Also, word on the street is film mogul Tyler Perry, who already owns 330 acres of the nearly 500-acre Army post, is kicking the tires of more Fort Mac property.