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Friday, December 17, 2010

APS backs off proposed Buckhead Village high school

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After two months of scathing community criticism and public outcry, the Atlanta Public Schools has apparently given up on a plan to build a new high school next door to Buckhead's West Village bar and retail district.

Earlier today, attorneys representing the owner of the Paces Apartments received a letter from APS officials indicating the school system was no longer interested in the 30-acre complex at the corner of East Andrews Drive and Roswell Road, according to veteran neighborhood activist Sally Silver.

APS has been predictably tight-lipped about its site selection process, but had set the controversy in motion a couple months back when it sent Paces owner John Grant a letter threatening to condemn his apartment complex if he didn't agree to sell it to them. Grant was reportedly already in negotiations to sell the property to another buyer.

Many Buckhead parents and residents were vocally opposed to the site because of its proximity to a nightlife district and the fact that it would sit at the locus of some of the worst traffic congestion in the area.

The move doesn't come as a major surprise, given rumors — unconfirmed by APS, naturally — that the system has been in negotiations with IBM over that company's 50-acre property just west of I-75.

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