Key Fort McPherson planning meeting this Thursday

Fort McPherson closing 2

Aerial of the front gate at Fort McPherson shot from the east looking west on Aug. 24, 2005. (Staff Photo by Keith Hadley/FILE)

The civilian authority overseeing redevelopment at Fort McPherson will hold a key meeting Thursday night on a wide-ranging community development plan.

The McPherson Implementing Local Redevelopment Authority will hold the meeting as its consultants prepare the final draft of a Livable Centers Initiative study of the area around the closed Army post.

It is the last meeting for residents to provide input before planners prepare the final document for consideration by the authority’s board, said Brian Hooker, the agency’s executive director. The LCI study, once approved by the authority and the city of Atlanta, will guide development of some 1,300 acres of property, including about 145 acres on the fort that remain under the authority’s control.

The process has had substantial community involvement, drawing input from hundreds through a series of planning meetings and a fall festival, Hooker said.

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A sign marking the site of the future Tyler Perry Studios facility at Fort McPherson. Perry closed on a deal with a civilian agency and the Army that will lead to him controlling 330 acres on the site. Documents obtained by the AJC show he has plans for a museum and amphitheater. J. Scott Trubey/STAFF strubey@ajc.com.

Last June, filmmaker Tyler Perry acquired 330 acres of Fort McPherson land where he is preparing a movie studio. A prior master plan for the area, which included a life sciences campus, was deemed to no longer be feasible.

The LCI study will examine the authority’s land as well as critical nodes such as the southern loop of the Beltline and the nearby Oakland City and Lakewood/Fort McPherson MARTA stations.

An Urban Land Institute panel last year recommended options, including an expanded Veterans Administration medical center, offices for federal agencies, government contractors and media companies as well as retail, restaurants and apartments.

So far, the authority’s planning partners have identified demand for retail, a grocery store, restaurants, office space, new and refurbished residential offerings, parks and public safety enhancements, Hooker told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution in a briefing this week.

Hooker said his group will provide updates to the draft plan to residents at Thursday’s meeting.

The Fort McPherson area was hit hard by the double-whammy of the housing collapse and the post’s closure. But new investment is coming — both in the form of Perry’s planned studio campus and the future extension of the Beltline.

The LCI process at Fort McPherson is the same community engagement process going on by urban planners in the neighborhoods around Turner Field.

Fort McPherson redevelopment

What: LCI Draft Plan Presentation and Review

Where: Atlanta Technical College’s Dennard Conference Center, 1560 Metropolitan Parkway SW, Atlanta

When: 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Click here for more information about the meeting.

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