Atlanta, GA – The Fort McPherson army base in Southwest Atlanta will house a major new science park research center. That's the vision of a planning committee that unveiled its proposal today, with Governor Sonny Perdue and Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin.
At the announcement, Governor Perdue asked the audience to indulge him for a moment
PERDUE: I want you to close your eyes with me for a moment and think about how refreshing a cool, iced glass of lemonade would have been in August. Folks, that's why we're here today. We're here to make lemonade.
The sour lemons that made this lemonade, says Perdue, were the U.S. army decisions in 2005 to close several bases, including Fort McPherson. He says using a quarter of the 488-acre base to build a science park more than makes up for that.
PERDUE: It would create a world-class research park to advance and draw upon the strength of Georgia's research institutions and its private partners in research and development.
Officials hope those collaborations between the University System of Georgia, private universities, and the CDC will attract investment and human capital, making Georgia competitive in the sciences.
The redevelopment plan converts other portions of the base into mixed-use housing and retail areas, green space, and affordable housing.
Next, the U.S. army has to approve the committee's redevelopment plan the base won't be vacated until 2011.