Tyler Perry To Buy Large Portion Of Fort McPherson in Southwest Atlanta

Atlanta-based filmmaker Tyler Perry is set to purchase a large portion of Fort McPherson in southwest Atlanta. The redevelopment authority of the closed army post tentatively approved a $30 million deal Friday.

Perry would buy 330 acres of the fort’s 488 acres in order to build 15-16 sound stages. City officials estimate the deal will create 8,000 new jobs.

At an authority board meeting, Perry stressed the film studio will be an opportunity to inspire.

“So many people that are working for me that are young African American who have never had a chance in this business, who live in East Point, who live in these different neighborhoods… so to be able to be a part of the community and see this and be inspired by it I think is going to lift them in a way that has never been done before,” said Perry.    

The authority signed off on the memorandum of understanding with Perry by an 8-1 vote. The Army must still sign off on the deal. Authority officials say that’s expected October 15.

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed said it’s a good deal for all parties.

“This is going to really solidify the city of Atlanta’s position as one of the leading entertainment markets in America,” said Reed.

The civilian-led redevelopment authority would retain 144 acres, roughly the size of Atlantic Station. Talks are underway to use it for affordable housing, job training, green space, and homeless services.

Some are criticizing the deal, saying it’s being done in secret and without enough community input.

“We need to have conversations about integrating the fort into the community. This is property that’s owned by the public. Those are conversations that ought to be held upfront. The public has a right to know what’s going on,” said state Sen. Vincent Fort, D-Atlanta. 

In addition, a studio group is challenging the deal in court, claiming it wasn’t given a fair chance to bid on the property.