State officials approve purchase of church for new Falcons stadium

State officials on Thursday signed off on the multimillion dollar deal to purchase a downtown Atlanta church to make way for the new Atlanta Falcons stadium.

The State Properties Commission unanimously voted to spend $6.2 million toward buying Mt. Vernon Baptist Church. The Falcons will chip in millions more to put the total sum at $14.5 million.

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed’s office had earlier negotiated deals for the Falcons to acquire another nearby congregation, Friendship Baptist Church, for $19.5 million.

Gov. Nathan Deal called Thursday’s vote a “key component” to ensure the stadium was built south of the Georgia Dome, a spot Falcons officials have coveted for its proximity to two MARTA stations, downtown and the convention center.

The team confirmed last week that the location was the “definite” site for the construction of the $1 billion-plus retractable roof stadium.

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