County to discuss Mountain View redevelopment

By Justin Reedy

A major stumbling block to redeveloping the Mountain View area of northern Clayton County has been removed, and county officials hope to have developers for the project selected by this fall.

Mountain View, a former residential area east of Hartsfield Atlanta International Airport that was left mostly vacant after the airport's last expansion, has been the target of redevelopment plans by the county for several years. County officials hope to renew the area with a combination of commercial, office and industrial development.

During recent talks with the city of Atlanta, Clayton County was able to negotiate an option agreement with the city on about 90 acres of city-owned land in the Mountain View area. The agreement will allow the county to market the land to potential developers without having to pay the city for the land until it is sold to those developers.

Getting that option agreement was an important part of the Mountain View redevelopment plan moving forward, according to Emory Brock, director of economic development for the county.

If Clayton County didn't have option rights to the city-owned land, he explained, a developer would have to negotiate an individual land deal with the city, which could be a time-consuming process.

"That could have scared off a lot of potential developers," Brock said.

With the option agreement out of the way, the county now hopes to get an outside contractor to assist in requesting and reviewing development proposals, Brock said. The frontrunner for that contract is Robert and Company, an Atlanta-based architecture, engineering and planning firm.

The Clayton County Board of Commissioners will discuss that contract at its work session meeting today at 9 a.m. in the county Administration Building, 112 Smith St., Jonesboro. Robert and Company's selection as a contractor could be approved at next week's regular meeting of the commission.

The firm has worked with Clayton County before on the Mountain View redevelopment plan, Brock said, making them the logical choice for helping at this stage.

"They helped us get the redevelopment plan together," he said. "They're more familiar with it than anybody else, as far as contractors go."

If approved, the contract would call for Robert and Company to be paid on an hourly basis for services as they are needed, Brock said, with the maximum value of the contract not to exceed $10,000.