Published on November 12th, 2015 |9
Reactions criticize mayor’s veto of funds to extend Moores Mill Rd.
That road extension will serve a long-delayed $100 million mixed-use redevelopment of the abandoned and derelict Moores Mill Shopping Center by South Carolina-based Edens Company, a center that would be anchored by a long-promised and much-needed 45,600-square-foot Publix supermarket to serve the residents in that area of northwest Atlanta.
Besides the Publix, the project also will include shops and restaurants, and up to 345 residential units. It is expected to generate 255 construction jobs, 284 permanent jobs and $2 million a year in sales taxes.
The City Council action Nov. 2 was the result of the tireless, unrelenting pursuit by Dist. 9 Councilwoman Felicia Moore to find a means for funding the entire $1.1 million extension to kick start the redevelopment of this center, which she has been pursuing for more than a decade.
Funding for the nearly $100 million project appeared secure in 2013 when the Federal Highway Administration awarded the city $2 million for the road improvements. But the federal money is being held up by ongoing congressional gridlock over a long-term transportation spending bill, and Edens is anxious to move forward with the development.
Under an ordinance approved by City Council, the $800,000 from the city will be added to $300,000 from Invest Atlanta, the city’s economic development agency. Invest Atlanta will hold another
$200,000 – fulfilling an original commitment of $500,000 – for remaining phases of the project. (To read BuckheadView’s story about the City Council action, click here.)
Mayor Reed does not hide the fact he does not like Councilwoman Moore, who has been a thorn in his side on many occasions as she continues to serve as a watchdog on the council in terms of spending of taxpayer monies and other such issues. In fact Reed recruited and reportedly helped fund a candidate to run against Moore in the last city elections, though the effort failed.
Many of the posted reactions to Reed’s veto of the funding for Moores Mill Road have referred to “petty infighting” and his “vendetta” against Councilwoman Moore as reasons for his actions.
BuckheadView was emailed a copy of a letter sent to Mayor Reed by Buckhead resident Robin Wilson, who lives off Moores Mill Road near the proposed shopping center redevelopment and has been following this issue for about a decade.
BuckheadView believes the letter expresses the views of many residents in that area of the city of Atlanta who have been awaiting this new development. Here is the text of Robin Wilson’s letter:
Please stop the needless political games and allow this development to proceed under the capable leadership of Edens. Your delays, vetoes, grandstanding and petty infighting affect more people than just Ms. Moore!
We are all citizens in what I used to think was a progressive, successful major metropolitan City. Your brazen disregard for procedure, protocol and professional courtesy are disgraceful, in
my opinion. I’ve given you the benefit of the doubt many times on this issue, but NO MORE!
You, Sir, are the cog in the wheel of what can be a vast improvement of the Westside of our City. The blighted and neglected eyesore that still stands at Marietta Blvd/Bolton Road/Moores Mill has resulted in increased violence, crime and deaths. I remind you of the shooting at the CVS Store at that very location.
Clean it up, or better yet, step out of the way of progress; and let Edens do their job. They’ve proved to be a good steward of property based on their recent acquisitions in Atlanta.
The challenge by Messrs. Woodham and Sherman was expected, and I don’t have a problem with “Taxpayer Watchdogs” doing their part to make sure that the politicos play by the rules. The Georgia Supreme Court validated the Bond Financing, and I thought the wheels of progress would begin rolling. That was June of 2013!
This project needs your support and should not be used in your personal vendetta against Ms. Moore. I speak as a concerned and interested taxpayer/neighbor in the adjacent area to the proposed development.
I welcome your response to me or to the City Council and most importantly to the investors and owners of the property who would like to proceed.
Ridgewood Rd. NW
Atlanta GA 30327
(Editor’s Commentary: BuckheadView heartily endorses the sentiments expressed in Robin Wilson’s letter and urges Mayor Reed to put the welfare of the residents of northwest Atlanta ahead of his own petty infighting with Councilwoman Moore and retract his veto of this important legislation. If the Mayor does not concur, BuckheadView urges the City Council to vote unanimously again and override the mayor’s veto.)