Turner Field (Courtesy Atlanta Braves)
Turner Field (Courtesy Atlanta Braves)

The City of Atlanta and Fulton County Recreation Authority announced late Monday that it received three proposals for the redevelopment of Turner Field. The Authority sent out a Request for Proposals (RFP) in early October with a deadline of Nov. 20.

The bidders are:
Carter/Georgia State University/Oakwood Development
Mercury Youth Organization, Inc.
Rita World Pearl Kingdom, LLC.

Georgia State University’s proposal to redevelop the site with Oakwood and Carter into a mixed-use development with a focus on expanding the campus – including transforming The Ted into a football stadium – has been on the table for months. Mercury Youth Mercury Youth Organization, Inc. (formerly known as Mercury Track Club) is a youth track and field club that has operated in Atlanta since 1972, according to its website. No information about Rita World Pearl Kingdom could be found.

“As the bids are reviewed, we will keep in mind that the overall objective is to produce a redevelopment plan that significantly improves the affected communities and the city as a whole,” said Keisha Lance Bottoms, Executive Director of AFCRA.

Added William K Whitner, Chair of the Authority: “Our intent is to be good stewards of city and county tax dollars, and to ensure that we have a redevelopment team in place before the Atlanta Braves leave the facility at the end of next year. This is a huge step in that process.”

The RFP sought proposals for the redevelopment of approximately 67 acres, including Turner Field. Bids were sought that would retain, renovate or repurpose the stadium, as well as a detailed redevelopment plan that would generate positive economic impact to the city and surrounding communities. Components were to include affordable housing, retail, parks and green space, acknowledgement of the area’s sport history and engaging with the community in a Livable Centers Initiative (LCI) study spearheaded by the City of Atlanta and the Atlanta Regional Commission.

“The bids will be evaluated on the basis of the requirements set forth in the RFP,” said Bottoms. “It is our intent to secure the best possible outcome for surrounding communities in a way that improves their quality of life and enhances the vibrancy of the city as a whole.”

UPDATE: The Turner Field Community Benefits Coalition, a group of residents and associations working to having their voices heard in the redevelopment of the site, released this statement:

The coalition is looking forward to working with AFCRA and the potential developers that submitted bids in response to the RFP. We are confident that our community survey of over 1,600 residents and the Livable Centers Initiative (LCI) can and should help shape the decision making process. Like Mayor Reed, we are disappointed that more bids were not forthcoming. If Mayor Reed feels the issuance of a new RFP to solicit more bids, and to address the concerns of all communities regarding properties in their midst is an appropriate solution, we will support that decision. However, we reject the suggestion that the community or LCI process discouraged bidders; most importantly, any bidder unwilling to work with the community and through the LCI process is not an appropriate developer for the site. As always, our objective is to collaborate openly with AFCRA and the developers to achieve the best possible results for this community.

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.