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Atlanta mayor: City could deposit first $4.6 million into affordable housing trust fund in December

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announced Friday that the first cash injection for a potentially $28 million citywide affordable housing trust fund could be made next month.

The inaugural funds, according to City of Atlanta housing chief Terri Lee, would amount to some $4.6 million and ultimately help create and preserve affordable units around the city.

Additionally, Bottoms said, some of the trust fund could eventually be used to expand the Westside Future Fund’s anti-displacement tax fund.

The creation of the trust fund is the result of an agreement, green-lit by the Atlanta City Council about a year ago, that would pave the way for the potentially $5 billion redevelopment of the Gulch, downtown’s desolate 40-acre site that’s one day expected to come alive as a mini-city called “Centennial Yards.”

It’s yet unclear, though, how a court battle regarding bond-supported public subsidies for the Gulch redevelopment could impact the deposit into the trust fund next month.

Atlanta officials have not responded to Saporta Report’s request for comments about the ongoing legal dispute or where exactly the money for the trust fund would come from. This story will be updated as responses are provided.

Bottoms made the announcement about the trust fund at the Westside Future Fund’s Transform Westside Summit, during which the mayor and Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy discussed the state of affordable housing in Atlanta — namely on the Westside.

“[Atlanta] will never be a great city for my children until it is a great city for all,” Bottoms told Cathy, who commended her for being an impressive wife and mother while holding the powerful post.

However, critics of the Gulch redevelopment deal have complained that the 200 affordable units (priced at 80 percent of the area median income) promised at Centennial Yards aren’t enough to warrant the roughly $1.75 billion in public help the project could receive.

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