Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Possible redevelopment plans for Georgia Square Mall

This story has been updated to correct an error in the amount of TAD funding requested.

The topic of discussion at tonight's Athens-Clarke County commissioner work session will be the future of Georgia Square Mall and the possibility of housing.

Earlier this month, commissioners saw plans for the site, which would tear down much of the current structure – which is more than 40 years old – and replace it and the surrounding parking lots with a mixed-use development heavy on new housing.

Commissioners will talk in depth about financing the project. The site’s developers are asking the county for around $180 million dollars in Tax Allocation District funding to help underwrite the redevelopment.

The redevelopment, according to the project's developers, would significantly increase the amount of money going into the pockets of Clarke County School District and Athens-Clarke County, both of which are funded in part by property taxes.

A consultant employed by the developers estimates that the site, when fully redeveloped, would yield some $5.2 million dollars per year in property taxes, compared to some $338,000 currently.

The location, according to the developers, offers a significant, though only partial, solution to the county's growing housing problems. According to documentation filed by the developers, the site will ultimately contain 212 units for purchase and another 986 rental units. Most of the rental units would have either one or two bedrooms. Average sale or rental costs have not yet been made public.

Tonight’s work session of the Mayor and Commission begins at 5:30 at City Hall and will be streamed on the county’s YouTube page.

Martin Matheny is WUGA's Program Director and a host and producer of our local news program 'Athens News Matters.' He started at WUGA in 2012 as a part-time classical music host and still hosts WUGA's longest-running local program 'Night Music' which is heard on WUGA and GPB Classical. He lives in Normaltown with his wife, Shaye and dog, Murphy.