Reed exploring new Civic Center sale options

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed is exploring whether it’s legal for the city to sell the Civic Center outside of a bid process already underway.

Bids on the 20-acre property are now under consideration by Atlanta’s economic development agency, but all are well under what city leaders hope to make off the sale, a Reed deputy said earlier this month.

In a sit-down with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Friday, the mayor said he was approached after the bidding process by an investment group willing to pay a higher price for the performing arts center. Now, city attorneys are exploring whether the city can legally sell the property to the group, whom Reed declined to name.

“I’ve got to believe that if I stand on the steps of City Hall and explain to everyone that we are trying to get the maximum value for a public asset, and someone is willing to pay it, I have got to believe that people will let me do that,” Reed said. “I just have to find a way for it to be appropriate.”