Olympia Thompson walks her five boys past the remains of one of the burned out units in the Brannon Hill complex Feb. 2. Ben Gray / bgray@ajc.com

Run-down DeKalb condos will be destroyed

A judge has authorized the demolition of four burned-down buildings at Brannon Hill condos, which has earned a reputation for intractable blight and poverty in DeKalb County.

The dilapidated buildings can be destroyed, eliminating public health dangers to the community, according to DeKalb Superior Court Judge Gregory Adams’ order Nov. 15. The broken-down structures are a haven for squatters, gangs and drug abusers.

DeKalb’s government sued this year for permission to intervene at Brannon Hill, where more than 100 people live in the community near Memorial Drive and the city of Clarkston.

DeKalb Commissioner Sharon Barnes Sutton thanks volunteers from Youth Leadership Academy during Community Clean Up Day & Celebration at Brannon Hill Condominiums organized by the HOA Board, community members, and friends on May 7. HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

“This is the first time anybody has had any success with tackling the problem of Brannon Hill,” said DeKalb Commissioner Sharon Barnes Sutton. “It’s just the right thing to do to clean up that blight over there so that those residents will have a suitable place to live.”

The judge’s order gives the condo’s property owners 60 days to demolish and clean up the properties before the county can move in.

Interim DeKalb CEO Lee May called the action “a big step in the right direction.”

“This order puts Brannon Hill’s owners on notice to improve the property, or DeKalb County has the authority to step in,” May said in a statement. “We have been working diligently for years to clean up Brannon Hill and other blighted communities.”

Please read the full story on MyAJC.com.

Brannon Hill has been called "the worst neighborhood in America."

RELATED: Government tries to intervene at squalid DeKalb condos

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