On November 5th, Marietta residents will vote on a $68 million General Obligation Bond designed to bolster economic development in the City of Marietta, particularly by working to improve the Franklin Road Corridor. If the bond is approved, $64 million will be used to allow the City of Marietta to buy up aging apartment complexes on Franklin Road, raze these properties, and then open the land up for new development by private investors, as well as for infrastructure improvements to the Franklin-Gateway Corridor. The remaining $4 million would be used for the beautification of Whitlock Avenue.
Mayor Tumlin is actively supporting this redevelopment bond and the opportunity it presents to allow private investors to come in and help in the revitalization of the Franklin Road Corridor. The Franklin Road Corridor is attractive to developers for redevelopment purposes for several reasons. The location, situated between two exits on I-75, near Highway 41 and in between Cumberland and Town Center, with easy access to downtown and the airport, is conducive to a mixed-used or office environment. While Mayor Tumlin acknowledges that “the city hasn’t always hit a home run” in regards to development, he asserts that private sector interest is high and he has “talked to more developers in the last eight weeks than ever before.”
Recognizing this private sector interest in developing Franklin Road, the City of Marietta’s Department of Development Services is inviting interested real estate professionals and firms to submit a statement of qualifications (RFQ) pursuant to providing real estate redevelopment professional advice relating to the acquisition, demolition, sale, re-zoning and or master planning of property(s) for the Franklin-Gateway Redevelopment Area. All proposals should be directed to the City of Marietta, Purchasing Department at 205 Lawrence Street, Marietta, GA 30060. The submission deadline for these RFQs is Tuesday, September 17th at 2:00 PM. To view the RFQ, click HERE.
Urban blight has become front and center in the Franklin Road area, with aging apartment complexes and its high levels of crime. The bond initiative would be targeting these blighted areas with the goal of attracting new residents and business to Marietta. The Mayor believes such redevelopment efforts would improve the area’s schools and create a safer environment for residents. Additionally, a domino effect would be established by benefiting surrounding hotels and office parks, along with bringing new business to the city, which in turn bring jobs. Furthermore, increased stabilization in the area and decreased crime rates will reduce the cost burdens on the City’s police department, fire department, and school system. Currently, Franklin Road consumes more per capita of the Marietta’s police, fire, school, and hospital funds than any other place in the city.
The redevelopment bond would allow new businesses to move into the city along Franklin Road by building where aging apartment complexes now stand. The millage rate for this bond will only equate to a .813 mill increase on the taxpayer. For example, on a $200,000 house in Marietta, the tax increase resulting from the bond is only $65.04 per year.
The bond will be one of the topics discussed at the upcoming Cobb Development Breakfast on September 16th. The Forum, co-hosted by The Council for Quality Growth, in partnership with Cobb EDGE and Revitalize Marietta, will be headlined by Georgia United States Senator Johnny Isakson and the U.S. Senator from Tennessee Bob Corker. It will also include three panels, including a panel specifically discussing “Finance/Incentives – Bond Vote” featuring Marietta Mayor Thunder Tumlin; Randy Weiner, Board Chairman, Marietta City Schools; and Charles Whatley, Managing Director of UrbanIS.
The Council for Quality Growth will continue to track the progress of the proposal and will work with the city of Marietta, Mayor Tumlin and the City Council to support the redevelopment efforts within the city.