Community leaders fret over new proposed stadium site - FOX 10 News | fox10phoenix.com

Community leaders fret over new proposed stadium site

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The Georgia World Congress Center Authority Board voted to begin feasibility studies on the alternative site for the Falcons stadium. The Georgia World Congress Center Authority Board voted to begin feasibility studies on the alternative site for the Falcons stadium.
ATLANTA -

Community leaders are alarmed at prospects that the new Atlanta Falcons stadium could go up near their homes and businesses.

On Tuesday, Falcons and government officials said they are now focusing on an alternative location on the other side of the Georgia Dome from the first proposed site.

After learning that the site located north of the Georgia Dome could become the location of the new Falcons stadium, business owners and residents nearby are worried.

Max Mandelis owns a 100-year-old building on Marietta Street. She is re-developing the one-time warehouse into loft office space. She fears a stadium would overwhelm the area and become an island in a sea of parking lots.

"What we're trying to create here on the west side of downtown Atlanta is a community that is active seven days a week, not just during the one day a week that we have with the stadium," Mandelis said.

An agreement earlier this year established a site just south of the Dome as the preferred location for the new stadium, but deals to buy two churches on the site have not finalized.

The Falcons told government officials on Tuesday that the south location is no longer feasible.

The Georgia World Congress Center Authority Board voted to allow the Falcons to start soil testing and other feasibility studies on the alternative site at the corner of Northside Drive and Ivan Allen Jr. Boulevard.

Critics of the north site also point to the fact that it lies half a mile from an area that has easy access to the MARTA system.

"We need to have a site that is immediately adjacent to MARTA, which the south side is. If we build it out here, we going to have to shuttle bus people to the site," said Mandelis.

Mandelis and others hope that in the end, the south site location will prevail.

"I am confident that the churches, the World Congress Center and the Falcons will be able to reach an agreement," Mandelis said.

City Councilman Ivory Lee Young represents the area near the proposed north site for the stadium. He told FOX 5 that the south location is clearly the better choice. He urged continued negotiations with the two churches to reach agreement on that site.

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