Board OKs Fort McPherson land sale to Tyler Perry

UPDATED: The board of the a development authority over Fort McPherson unanimously approved a sale of 330 acres of land to filmmaker Tyler Perry.

The vote was held today during a special meeting of the McPherson Implementing Local Redevelopment Authority board.

Full statement from actor, director, writer and producer Tyler Perry:

“When I first moved to Georgia, I lived in Southwest Atlanta. For me, it’s truly where Tyler Perry Studios was born and was the place where I first worked towards achieving this dream. So today, it is with humble gratitude that I announce that I closed on Fort McPherson where I will be relocating my studios. I would like to thank Mayor Reed, Gov. Nathan Deal and the Georgia Film Commission for allowing me to continue to grow my business in such a great city and state. And to all the people of Southwest Atlanta whom I consider my brothers and sisters, thank you for allowing me to be a part of the neighborhood. I look forward to helping lift this area to the greatness that we know it could be.

“Thank you.”

— Tyler Perry

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From earlier…

A sale of most of Fort McPherson to filmmaker Tyler Perry could take place as soon as today, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has learned.

The McPherson Implementing Local Redevelopment Authority has called a special meeting at 9 a.m., and it is believed that the final required votes on the deal will be taken there, a person with direct knowledge of the situation told the AJC.

The civilian authority tasked with redeveloping the shuttered Army post is racing to close on a complicated transaction to acquire the 488-acre complex from the military and simultaneously transfer 330 acres of the property to Perry.

Perry and Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed came to an agreement about a year ago for the filmmaker and star of the Madea films to acquire most of the post for $30 million to build a new movie studio. About 144 acres of the post is slated for redevelopment, and the Veterans Administration controls some land for medical facilities.

Authority officials declined to comment ahead of the meeting.

The sale to Perry, a deal that has split many in the neighborhoods south of downtown, concludes a year of prolonged negotiations that at times were nearly derailed. The deal now brings the post, founded in 1885 and closed in 2011, under civilian control.

But communities around the sprawling compound have been fearful that the new movie studio will stand as a slightly smaller walled-off fortress dividing neighborhoods as it did under the Army.

The AJC will attend Friday’s authority board meeting. Read more about this developing story online at MyAJC.com or in Saturday’s print edition of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

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