Tyler Perry and T.D. Jakes buy Fort Mac acres, South Cobb’s Magnolia Crossing continues to be a “hole in the ground”
The Fort McPherson land sale is done, and two prominent African Americans have scooped up the remaining acreage at the shuttered U.S. Army base.
Movie mogul Tyler Perry is purchasing 40 acres at Fort McPherson and plans to develop an entertainment and shopping district near his namesake film production facility, Tyler Perry Studios, built on land purchased previously at Fort Mac years ago.
In a separate deal, megachurch pastor T. D. Jakes is acquiring about 95 of the remaining acreage to further a development project he is pushing for affordable and workforce housing. The Redevelopment Authority for Fort McPherson voted to approve the land deals with Perry and Jakes last week. All available property at the 488-acre former base, which closed in 2011, is now sold or under contract.
Perry will own about 368 acres of the 488-acre former military base. His latest land purchase will allow the mogul to develop an entertainment district that he plans to open to the public, however, it will not be connected to his nearby Tyler Perry Studios. It will include a “theatre district, retail, restaurants and plenty of employment opportunities,” according to a news release.
T. D. Jakes is the founder and pastor of The Potter’s House Church in Dallas, Texas. In a news release, Jakes said he wants to develop “real estate and programs in response to the growing, nationwide need for affordable, attainable, and workforce housing.” Jakes has also produced movies for Lifetime network.
Atlanta developer Stephen Macauley previously had an agreement to redevelop portions of the property, but the deal fell through in 2019. The authority had tried to find a new developer since November 2019.
This land deal development for the Fort Mac acres stands in stark contrast to the 50 acres of prime real estate that sits quiescent in our South Cobb community. Years have passed since Magnolia Crossing first became dormant. The community is stunned as it sees other parts of the county develop and prosper, with no plans in place to develop these acres of land in our community into anything meaningful for the benefit of the South Cobb community.
As previously reported, Magnolia Crossing is not just another parcel of land. It enjoys a beautiful Atlanta Skyline as its backdrop, provides easy access to major highways, and is minutes from Atlanta and the international airport. It is a developers dream property, but yet no dirt has been turned on the property since the apartments were razed in 2016. Even though members of the community routinely went before the Cobb Commission and Cobb Redevelopment Authority to demand leadership on developing the land. We were simply ignored by those in charge.
Unlike other communities that have seen economic boom and continued development, our South Cobb community will continue to suffer due to a lack of vision and leadership at the helm until we step forward to tell Chair Lisa Cupid…enough is enough.
SPOTLIGHT will continue to monitor this matter and bring you the latest information as it develops on Magnolia Crossing. To keep the conversation going, visit out Facebook Page.