The Downtown Redevelopment project is something the city has been talking about for almost 15 years, starting with the 2005 LCI study. Countless hours of meetings have been spent discussing why the city needs to do this. It has been the subject of multiple other studies after this initial one, and every one of them comes to the same conclusion: our town center and city buildings have long outlived their usefulness.
These facilities were designed and built in their current location decades before the MARTA station came to our city, built horizontally on large plots, in a time when land values were low and transit wasn't even on the horizon. This land should be some of the most prized real estate in North Atlanta, but instead it is being squandered by government services use. These facilities have served their purpose well, but it's past time to push forward, to create the change we all want to see in our city.
If we look around us, every successful city on our borders and beyond has taken steps to invest in themselves and their own future. Doing this redevelopment project here in Doraville is not going to be easy or inexpensive, but the time for talking about the need to do something is over. It's time for action if we ever want our city to grow. Of course doing something this large scale can be scary, it's much safer to sit back and do nothing in hopes that it will just happen without our participation. I think we have all seen the results of taking that path.
In the near future the city council is going to be discussing the options available to us for funding this project. We also will be working with staff to come up with a final plan that best utilizes the land that is currently owned by the city, to spur the growth and development we all want to see. It’s going to take some courage and faith in our decisions for us to move forward as a community, and we need your trust to make this a reality.
I fully support the city moving forward with this project and I know one thing for sure: if we don't do this, our city will continue to stagnate and decline. This public investment is what developers respond to, and that fact is apparent all around us. I personally don't see this as taking a leap of faith, we just have to look at our neighbors to see the results in this sort of public investment.
These are some exciting times for our city and I know this is the right path for us to take. Below is a link to some of the studies and more information about what has been discussed in the past, as well as the minutes from the council retreat where we made this a priority.