SunTrust Park: Braves' new home


No property tax rate increase for Cobb County

The Cobb County Commission split 3-2 to keep the property tax rate where it is following a marathon hearing Tuesday night, but warned that services may be cut as a result. Many taxpayers will still end up paying more, as assessments in much of the county have gone up, some dramatically so. More than a dozen speakers assailed the board over a proposed .13 mill increase championed by Chairman...


Cobb proposes property tax hike

Cobb proposes property tax hike

Cobb County intends to raise taxes this year, announcing a proposed millage rate increase from 6.66 to 6.89 to the General Fund. The millage rate increase coincides with the county’s largest tax digest ever, $33.66 billion for 2017, due to rising property values. The rollback rate for the General Fund this year is 6.252. The county would have to decrease the millage rate to that amount...
County manager shepherded Cobb from pastures to pro sports

County manager shepherded Cobb from pastures to pro sports

The proposed East-West Connector had been stalled for some 20 years when, in 1993, Cobb County Manager David Hankerson was assigned the task of winning the permits to build it.  The path of the road cut through not just Austell and Smyrna, but a historic district and wetlands. Local preservationists and conservationists who opposed the project had drawn a line in the sand. Multiple federal and...
Hawks in talks on mixed-use complex near Philips Arena

Hawks in talks on mixed-use complex near Philips Arena

The Atlanta Hawks and partners are negotiating to take control of parcels near Philips Arena for a future mixed-use development that would echo what the Braves built at SunTrust Park, people familiar with the situation told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Word of the land negotiations, said to be advanced but not final, comes just days after the Atlanta City Council approved a deal for...
Atlanta Council approves car rental tax deal for Philips renovation

Atlanta Council approves car rental tax deal for Philips renovation

Seven months after Mayor Kasim Reed made renovation of Philips Arena part of the deal to keep the Atlanta Hawks downtown, the Atlanta City Council has signed off on a way to pay for the work. The Council on Monday approved a deal between the city and College Park to extend car rental tax collections beyond their 2038 sunset to raise at least $110 million to fund a $192.5 million update of Philips...
New Cobb police chief faces challenges over staffing, community relations

New Cobb police chief faces challenges over staffing, community relations

Cobb County’s new police chief, Mike Register, said he’s eager to address insufficient staffing and perceptions of racism outlined in a recent study of the department. Register will begin his first full day on the job Wednesday by meeting with his command staff to discuss the study by the International Association of Chiefs of Police, and formulate 30, 60 and 90-day plans based on the...
Cobb pays Braves $11.8M for sewer, storm-water and transportation

Cobb pays Braves $11.8M for sewer, storm-water and transportation

The Cobb County Commission voted Tuesday to pay the Atlanta Braves $11.8 million for sewer, storm-water and transportation infrastructure in and around SunTrust Park.  The payment is intended to resolve a disagreement over whether the county has met its obligation to fund $14 million in transportation infrastructure.  The $14 million obligation became a source of tension last year when the...
Acworth goat farm dropped from Cobb parks list amid money concerns

Acworth goat farm dropped from Cobb parks list amid money concerns

A 50-acre goat farm in Acworth many hoped would be bought by the county as a park is no longer up for consideration, its owner says, after the two parties failed to agree on a price. The property is one of four that have been dropped from a list of potential park land as the county struggles to fulfill new Chairman Mike Boyce’s promise to buy more park land. The county’s official position...
Rob Hosack appointed Cobb County manager

Rob Hosack appointed Cobb County manager

The Cobb County Commission appointed Rob Hosack county manager at its regular Tuesday meeting. Hosack has been serving as interim county manager since April 26. Hosack replaces David Hankerson, who served in the position for more than 24 years. Hosack’s salary is $210,000 annually. Hankerson’s salary upon departure was $285,802.  Hosack, former head of the department of...
County officials unsure what to make of Gwinnett Braves’ name change

County officials unsure what to make of Gwinnett Braves’ name change

The Gwinnett Braves announced Monday that they’ll change names before next season, eschewing one of baseball’s most iconic surnames in favor of a yet-to-be-determined moniker more reflective of the team’s home county. It’s a move that team officials hope will lead to better marketing and alleviate “confusion” among fans by helping the Triple-A affiliate better...
Cobb police review addresses “perceptions of racism,” stadium strain

Cobb police review addresses “perceptions of racism,” stadium strain

Cobb County police must acknowledge and address public perceptions of racism and discriminatory policing, according to a study of the department by the International Association of Chiefs of Police released Thursday.  The study was commissioned by the county last year for $93,000, following two widely-publicized, racially-fraught incidents involving the same officer, who later resigned...
Taxpayers in Cobb to pay for traffic control around SunTrust Park

Taxpayers in Cobb to pay for traffic control around SunTrust Park

Cobb County taxpayers are paying county police officers overtime to direct traffic outside of the SunTrust Park development during games and special events, at an estimated cost of $900,000 per year, an Atlanta Journal-Constitution investigation found. Traffic control is an expense the Braves paid during their last eight seasons at Turner Field, and one the Falcons will pay when Mercedes-Benz Stadium...
Cobb taxpayers to pay for traffic control around SunTrust Park

Cobb taxpayers to pay for traffic control around SunTrust Park

The day after Christmas, just three months before the first game at SunTrust Park, Cobb police chief John Houser sent a memo to his boss putting the estimated cost of traffic control outside the new stadium development at more than $1 million a year. It was the first time anyone put a hard number on what promises to be a significant expense for county taxpayers over the 30-year life of the stadium...
Cobb Commission roundup: Braves liaison, open space zoning, parks

Cobb Commission roundup: Braves liaison, open space zoning, parks

The Cobb County Commission took several notable actions at its regular Tuesday meeting in regards SunTrust Park, parks and a controversial zoning category. Michael Murphy, the chairman’s assistant for special projects, was appointed the county’s official liaison to The Atlanta Braves. There is no additional financial compensation for the role. Murphy will be tasked with ensuring both sides...
Georgia 6th District Race: Cobb Commission Chair Mike Boyce endorses Karen Handel

Georgia 6th District Race: Cobb Commission Chair Mike Boyce endorses Karen Handel

Mike Boyce, chairman of the Cobb County Commission, endorsed Republican Karen Handel in the sixth district race against Democrat Jon Ossoff, her campaign announced Friday. "As the sitting Chairman of Cobb County, I know the challenges Karen Handel encountered” as chair of the Fulton County Commission, he said. “I know she is up to the task. I strongly endorse her and encourage everyone...
Kempner: Braves push our buttons to sell SunTrust Park

Kempner: Braves push our buttons to sell SunTrust Park

The Atlanta Braves are spending a chunk of change to welcome you back to the place they’ve just moved into and you’ve never been. They’re hoping the pitch pays off by making regulars out of casual fans. And they expect to get a younger crowd. You’ve probably seen or heard ads from the team’s “Welcome Home” marketing campaign, a sweeping effort that includes...
Marietta ice cream plant wary of Trump talk on NAFTA, import tax

Marietta ice cream plant wary of Trump talk on NAFTA, import tax

Keith Schroeder, founder of High Road Ice Cream & Sorbet, surveys the storage room of his Marietta plant and ticks off countries that supply ingredients: Mexico, Japan, Thailand, Canada, Tanzania, Ivory Coast and Madagascar, to name just a few. “This is like the U.N. in here!” he exclaims. “This is neat.” That smiling embrace of global trade is now tempered by uncertainty,...
LIVE UPDATES: SunTrust Park Traffic

LIVE UPDATES: SunTrust Park Traffic

Traffic on the Perimeter and Cobb Parkway backed up as expected. But for the most part traffic flowed smoothly on roads and highways around the stadium, and fans reported few problems. To prepare for the new stadium, Cobb County and the state spent tens of millions of dollars in road improvements, pedestrian bridges and a Cumberland Mall-area shuttle service. The Braves pushed back weekday game times...
Even with 3 years’ notice SunTrust Park opening fuels varied emotions

Even with 3 years’ notice SunTrust Park opening fuels varied emotions

A simple alert on Shannon Fain’s phone made him physically ill, he says. It derailed a meeting in his boss’s office. They both thought the news had to be a joke. He does not remember much from that day, just rushing to the bathroom because he was so nauseous. Fain took the rest of the day off work because he couldn’t focus, scouring the Internet for anything to make sense of what...
Cobb buries fraught history, embraces Atlanta with SunTrust Park

Cobb buries fraught history, embraces Atlanta with SunTrust Park

Friday is opening day for SunTrust Park and the Atlanta Braves, but it’s an opening day of sorts for Cobb County as well. For many, the brand new red brick ballpark represents the closed-door deal that brought the Braves to Cobb at taxpayers’ expense to the tune of half a billion dollars. But the stadium and surrounding mixed-use development also represent changes that have slowly erased...
Atlanta United opens Marietta center, anticipates Mercedes-Benz play

Atlanta United opens Marietta center, anticipates Mercedes-Benz play

Atlanta United celebrated Tuesday the opening of its training ground, a $60 million complex in Marietta that includes the team headquarters and six pristine pitches. But the MLS expansion team couldn’t escape questions about its other home: Mercedes-Benz stadium. Team owner Arthur Blank and president Darren Eales insisted everything is on schedule for the new $1.5 billion stadium to open...
Atlanta Braves’ move to SunTrust Park a milestone for region

Atlanta Braves’ move to SunTrust Park a milestone for region

Opening Day of SunTrust Park marks a shift for professional sports in Atlanta. This Friday, 51 years after their move to Atlanta from Milwaukee, America’s Team becomes the first Atlanta franchise from one of the top pro leagues to make its home outside the city limits. Of all the corporate relocations the suburbs have taken at the expense of the city, not one is more symbolic than the Braves...
SunTrust Park opening: Metro Atlanta’s latest landmark moment

SunTrust Park opening: Metro Atlanta’s latest landmark moment

The Braves made Atlanta a major league city. Their first game in Atlanta Stadium on April 12, 1966, helped cement Atlanta’s stature as the Capital of the South. Atlanta had Coca-Cola, Delta Air Lines and Martin Luther King Jr. Now it had The Hammer, Knucksie and what would become America’s Team. On Friday, the Braves will play their first regular season game at the new SunTrust Park...
SunTrust Park and Battery poised for Braves’ opening day

SunTrust Park and Battery poised for Braves’ opening day

By the time some 40,000 fans arrive at SunTrust Park and The Battery for opening day April 14, most evidence of the scramble to complete the billion dollar project will be gone or hidden from view. About half of the restaurants and stores that have announced partnerships with the team are expected to be open and operational, including the ones closest to the stadium, with the rest opening over the...
For redeveloped street, professional soccer brings more change

For redeveloped street, professional soccer brings more change

On the newly renamed street Franklin Gateway in Marietta, children practiced their soccer skills — dribbling, passing and shooting — on a converted tennis court. Across the street, workers labored to put the finishing touches on Atlanta United’s new $60 million training complex. The soccer team, which donated balls, cones and goals for the children’s practice, played...
That I-85 collapse: Bolstering demand for Atlanta construction jobs -- but for how long?

That I-85 collapse: Bolstering demand for Atlanta construction jobs -- but for how long?

The rebuilding of I-85 bolsters one of the fastest-growing sectors of the metro Atlanta economy: construction.  That effect stands out among many on the local economy.  There are about 118,500 construction jobs in Atlanta -- the majority of the state’s 184,400 jobs in the sector, as reported last week by the state Department of Labor.  Metro Atlanta construction jobs are...
Braves urge fans to plan as traffic test looms with exhibition game

Braves urge fans to plan as traffic test looms with exhibition game

Officials from the Atlanta Braves and Cobb County say their traffic plan is ready to be put to the test, with less than a week until some 20,000 season ticket holders descend on SunTrust Park for an exhibition game against the New York Yankees. Braves President of Business Derek Schiller said the exhibition game will give the team, the county transportation department and the Cobb Police Department...
Comcast to open tech incubator at SunTrust Park

Comcast to open tech incubator at SunTrust Park

Cable giant Comcast is getting in on the action to find the next big thing in Atlanta tech. The Philadelphia-based company is launching a technology incubator at its new offices in The Battery at Cobb County’s SunTrust Park. “The Farm Startup Accelerator,” as the project will be known, will help identify and nurture tech entrepreneurs who are creating the innovations of tomorrow...
Test-drive gives hints about SunTrust Park traffic

Test-drive gives hints about SunTrust Park traffic

Along with the excitement of SunTrust Park’s grand opening next month comes a familiar dread: navigating Atlanta traffic. Just how long will it take to drive to Atlanta Braves games, in time for a 7:35 p.m. first pitch? The Atlanta Journal-Constitution dispatched five reporters and editors to find out. We took to the streets during a recent Friday rush hour, driving from various locations...
Will the Braves’ SunTrust Park create a traffic nightmare?

Will the Braves’ SunTrust Park create a traffic nightmare?

Take a bustling commercial district where 65,000 employees and hundreds of thousands of commuters clog roads and highways at rush hour. Add a 41,000-seat stadium that could draw another 13,000 vehicles – just as those employees and other commuters are heading home. Now imagine it’s your job to make sure this does not become a traffic apocalypse. Welcome to SunTrust Park. Not to worry...
New Braves stadium to sport Delta airplane tail

New Braves stadium to sport Delta airplane tail

The new home of the Atlanta Braves, Sun Trust Park, will have an unusual piece of decor: A giant Delta airplane tail next to the stadium. The tail is from a retired Delta Boeing 757-200 known as Delta Ship 624, which had been retired to the desert in Marana, Ariz. Delta employees including maintenance workers in its TechOps department helped move the tail from the desert to a hangar in Atlanta...
These are the hottest real estate markets in metro Atlanta, per RE/MAX

These are the hottest real estate markets in metro Atlanta, per RE/MAX

Where do people want to live in metro Atlanta these days? RE/MAX Georgia claims its analysis has answered just that. The study uses First Multiple Listing Service data to determine which cities will be most in demand in 2017. The cities are in Cobb, DeKalb, Forsyth and north Fulton counties. “Atlanta’s housing market was strong throughout 2016 and shows no signs of slowing down,&rdquo...
I-285/Ga. 400 construction expected to lead to even more traffic

I-285/Ga. 400 construction expected to lead to even more traffic

Brace yourselves, northern Perimeter drivers: Traffic is about to back up even further. Mayors from four cities said during a lunch panel discussion Friday they expect the reconstruction project at I-285 and Ga. 400, which started last month, to result in delays and backups until work is completed in 2020. The interchange is gaining flyover ramps, new lanes on both highways and traffic-smoothing improvements...
Link to Cobb Galleria and SunTrust park area approved

Link to Cobb Galleria and SunTrust park area approved

A critical link to making the dream of freely walking over the traffic-congested area between a convention hub on one side and the Braves’ new SunTrust Park was approved Wednesday. The board that runs Cobb Galleria Centre unanimously agreed to build and pay for a connection to the pedestrian overpass bridge already under construction that will eventually let folks walk over I-285 at I-75. The...
Stadium and many sports fields planned near Stonecrest Mall

Stadium and many sports fields planned near Stonecrest Mall

Developers announced plans Wednesday to transform a grassy field near Stonecrest Mall into a $200 million sports complex that they say will be swarming with amateur and pro athletes playing soccer, football, baseball and other sports. Construction on Atlanta Sports City is set to begin this fall and will eventually include a 15,000 seat stadium, 22 soccer and football fields, seven baseball diamonds...
Stadium and sports complex to be built in Stonecrest

Stadium and sports complex to be built in Stonecrest

A giant sports complex featuring a 15,000-seat stadium, 22 soccer and football fields and seven baseball diamonds will be built next to Stonecrest Mall in southeast DeKalb County. Developers announced  Atlanta Sports City on Wednesday, which will be located on a nearly 200-acre site they hope will attract regional youth tournaments, professional teams and tourists to the area....
Cobb approves Cumberland bus route ahead of Braves stadium opening

Cobb approves Cumberland bus route ahead of Braves stadium opening

The route for a new bus to help shuttle fans to SunTrust Park and commuters around the Cumberland area was approved by the Cobb Commission Tuesday. The CobbLinc Cumberland Circulator will begin operation on March 31, the same day as the Braves’ first exhibition game against the New York Yankees. Service will continue weekdays and Saturdays throughout the year, including game days at the new...
Birthday gala starts year of tributes to Hank Aaron

Birthday gala starts year of tributes to Hank Aaron

He’s Atlanta’s greatest sports hero, and perhaps in no other year will the region show Hank Aaron as much love as in 2017. A new bronze likeness of Aaron and other tributes to his Hall of Fame career will be fixtures of the Atlanta Braves’ new SunTrust Park in Cobb County, which opens this spring. Georgia State University plans to honor the Hammer at its future Panthers baseball...
Cobb may owe millions more to Braves for stadium

Cobb may owe millions more to Braves for stadium

After spending tens of millions on infrastructure improvements in and around SunTrust Park, Cobb County could be on the hook for more. The Braves say the county has not fulfilled its obligation to fund $14 million on transportation infrastructure. County officials say they are working with the team to identify what projects may count toward that commitment. Cobb Transportation Director Jim Wilgus...
Cobb, Braves meet Tuesday over $14 million dispute at SunTrust Park

Cobb, Braves meet Tuesday over $14 million dispute at SunTrust Park

Cobb County Commission Chairman Mike Boyce has called for a public discussion Tuesday at 1:30 p.m. over an Atlanta Braves’ claim that county taxpayers owe $14 million for roads, bridges and other infrastructure improvements at SunTrust Park. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported today that the Braves are seeking reimbursement for five projects, but Cobb transportation director...
Braves, Cobb spar over transportation projects at SunTrust Park

Braves, Cobb spar over transportation projects at SunTrust Park

Three months before the first pitch at SunTrust Park, the Atlanta Braves’ front office is claiming Cobb County taxpayers owe $14 million for roads, walkways and other pedestrian improvements at the team’s new stadium. The Braves have already paid most of those expenses, and team officials say the county is contractually obligated to reimburse them. The county says it has already paid that...
Braves announced Uber, Waze partnerships for new Cobb stadium

Braves announced Uber, Waze partnerships for new Cobb stadium

The Atlanta Braves unveiled the second part of the team’s plan to manage traffic to the new stadium in Cobb County, including partnerships with ride sharing service Uber and navigation app Waze. SunTrust Park will host an exhibition game for season ticket holders on March 31 and opening day is set for April 14. Transportation to and from the stadium has been of paramount concern for Braves fans...
Punch Bowl Social to join Braves’ Battery lineup at SunTrust Park

Punch Bowl Social to join Braves’ Battery lineup at SunTrust Park

The Atlanta Braves and their development partners have shuffled the food and entertainment lineup a bit outside the new SunTrust Park with a new social club concept that includes celebrity chef Hugh Acheson as a partner. The Braves said Tuesday that Punch Bowl Social, a games and fine dining concept, will join The Battery entertainment district in September. The “eat, drink play” or &ldquo...
285 bridge to Braves stadium nearly halfway finished

285 bridge to Braves stadium nearly halfway finished

Update Jan. 12, 2017: The bridge over Interstate 285 leading to the new Braves stadium is 45 percent complete and still on track to be operational by first pitch on April 14, according to Cobb Transportation Director Jim Wilgus. Wilgus said $4.1 million has been spent on construction so far. The total cost of the bridge, including design, will reach about $12 million. This week, the Cobb County...
Georgia State, partners close deal for Turner Field

Georgia State, partners close deal for Turner Field

A little more than three years after the Atlanta Braves announced plans to move to Cobb County, and a few days after the team formally left Turner Field, their old home has a new owner. Georgia State University and a private development team closed Thursday on their $30 million purchase of the ballpark and surrounding parking lots, completing the long-simmering deal and marking a new era for...
Metro Atlanta’s hot projects and trends for 2017

Metro Atlanta’s hot projects and trends for 2017

Midtown will likely get hotter. New stadiums will open. Suburbs will “densify.” The Beltline will grow. Here are some big projects and development trends in the Atlanta region to watch in 2017. New stadiums on deck Metro Atlanta is awash in stadium-related projects and 2017 is a pivotal year for all of them. The Braves open SunTrust Park and its adjacent Battery mixed-use development in...
Beyond the Braves: Cobb chairman’s tone deafness was his undoing

Beyond the Braves: Cobb chairman’s tone deafness was his undoing

For better or for worse, outgoing Commission Chairman Tim Lee will go down in history as the man who brought the Atlanta Braves to Cobb County. The decision to spend hundreds of millions of public dollars on a new stadium and supporting infrastructure without a referendum angered many voters, even those who welcomed the team. It also contributed to Lee’s defeat in the polls this past summer...
Lee’s legacy: Chair lost touch in ascent to power capped by Braves deal

Lee’s legacy: Chair lost touch in ascent to power capped by Braves deal

For better or for worse, outgoing Commission Chairman Tim Lee will go down in history as the man who brought the Atlanta Braves to Cobb County. The decision to spend hundreds of millions of public dollars on a new stadium and supporting infrastructure without a referendum angered many voters, even those who welcomed the team. It also contributed to Lee’s defeat in the polls this past...
Braves president peppered by Cobb officials over transit to stadium

Braves president peppered by Cobb officials over transit to stadium

Cobb representatives questioned Braves President of Development Mike Plant Monday over the team’s plans for traffic and transportation to its new stadium, SunTrust Park, citing pressure from constituents. The exchange came during a meeting with Cobb lawmakers and local officials to discuss the upcoming legislative session. “People in my district are very concerned about the traffic...
Cobb police voice confidence over Braves traffic plan

Cobb police voice confidence over Braves traffic plan

Despite anticipated traffic headaches, Cobb County’s public safety department is confident that baseball fans will be able to get to their seats in the new SunTrust Park before game time. The county is still developing a traffic management plan, but officials are hopeful, Cobb Public Safety Director Sam Heaton and Sgt. J.D. Lorens said Thursday at a luncheon organized by the Cobb Chamber of...
Is a casino like this in Atlanta’s future?

Is a casino like this in Atlanta’s future?

OXON HILL, MD. — At night, the 23-story hotel tower of the MGM National Harbor casino resort rises above the Beltway like a glowing glass shard. A few miles west across the Potomac River, sit the wealthy enclaves of Northern Virginia, while the marble monuments of the nation’s capital city beckon to the north. Inside, workers scurry to assemble a Christmas village scene that will be adorned...
Cobb officials: Road project not for Braves

Cobb officials: Road project not for Braves

A $30 million roadway project in Cobb County has come under fire as yet another expense associated with the new Braves stadium, but officials say voters approved it years ago as part of the 2011 SPLOST. Once completed, the Windy Hill Road/Terrell Mill Road connector will be a four-lane roadway intended to alleviate traffic from the reversible express lanes under construction along the Northwest...
Kempner: Team owners go wild inside the public money machine

Kempner: Team owners go wild inside the public money machine

Imagine the millionaire and billionaire owners of Atlanta’s top pro sports teams standing together in a glass booth, each holding empty pillowcases. A buzzer blares. Cash starts blowing up from gaps in the floor. The owners scramble to stuff as many floating bills as they can in their pillowcases and suit pockets. Metro Atlanta politicians inevitably turn on that kind of public money machine...
AJC keeping pace with metro Atlanta’s changing skyline

AJC keeping pace with metro Atlanta’s changing skyline

You can see it happening all over. Giant cranes dot the skyline from south of Atlanta to the northern suburbs as thousands of construction workers help reshape our communities. Atlanta is experiencing a building boon as we construct new stadiums, expand the airport and raise new office towers. myAJC Must Reads 2016 For example, at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, crews there have started...
Cobb Chairman-elect Mike Boyce promises consensus leadership

Cobb Chairman-elect Mike Boyce promises consensus leadership

A day after assuming the title of Cobb County Commission Chairman-elect, retired Marine Col. Mike Boyce spoke of the need to build consensus and repair damaged relationships on the Commission. Sitting in his high ceiling-ed East Cobb home, furnished with artifacts from his postings around the world, Boyce repeatedly referenced his experience in the military, casting himself as a delegator who will...
Atlanta ups its bet on sports with Hawks deal

Atlanta ups its bet on sports with Hawks deal

The city of Atlanta’s deal with the Atlanta Hawks to refurbish Philips Arena is more than just a pact to keep the NBA franchise downtown. It means the region is tripling down on pro sports stadiums as drivers of economic development. Added to previous pacts with the Braves and Falcons, the Hawks agreement pushes the total upfront, taxpayer-backed funding on new or refurbished venues to about...
Philips Arena to get $192.5 million face-lift

Philips Arena to get $192.5 million face-lift

The Atlanta Hawks and the city have come to terms on a deal that includes public funds to renovate Philips Arena, a move that could keep the NBA franchise downtown through 2046. The $192.5 million agreement extends the Hawks lease by 18 years and calls for taxpayers to pay $142.5 million, or about three-quarters, to upgrade the arena, with the Hawks to contribute $50 million. The announcement comes...
Cobb Galleria to build $500K ADA elevator to Braves bridge

Cobb Galleria to build $500K ADA elevator to Braves bridge

The Cobb-Marietta Coliseum and Exhibit Hall Authority on Monday voted to build elevator access to the Braves bridge over I-285 for mobility-impaired visitors. The authority will put up to $500,000 toward an elevator at the south end of a bridge leading from the Galleria parking deck to the Battery, the Braves’ mixed-use development under construction next to SunTrust Park. The authority owns...
Galleria to build $500K elevator to Braves bridge in Cobb County

Galleria to build $500K elevator to Braves bridge in Cobb County

The Cobb-Marietta Coliseum and Exhibit Hall Authority board on Monday voted to build elevator access to the Braves bridge over I-285 for mobility-impaired visitors. The authority will put up to $500,000 toward an elevator at the south end of the bridge leading to the Battery, the Braves’ mixed-use development under construction next to SunTrust Park. Although the authority will pay for the elevator...
Cobb amends Braves stadium vending rule

Cobb amends Braves stadium vending rule

The Cobb County Commission on Tuesday amended a controversial vending ordinance that has been criticized by some who say it gives an unfair advantage to the Atlanta Braves at their new stadium. The changes addressed penalties for violating the ordinance, but not the rule itself. The ordinance has implications for anyone who may wish to sell souvenirs or food from carts or kiosks in and around the...
Cobb talks Braves, transit in anticipation of first pitch

Cobb talks Braves, transit in anticipation of first pitch

An Atlanta Braves executive expressed confidence that the plan put together to manage traffic to and from the new SunTrust Park stadium will work well. Mike Plant, president of development, lauded the Atlanta Braves’ traffic management plan as “very effective.” He told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution the plan will be revealed in phases leading up the the first pitch in April. Plant...
Kempner: Braves buddy Tim Lee sees proof he was right

Kempner: Braves buddy Tim Lee sees proof he was right

Tim Lee sees evidence everywhere that he was right about business and the Atlanta Braves. Baseball can transform a community. Or so he says. Sure, he’ll be out of a job soon. His run as Cobb County commission chairman ends this year after voters booted him in the GOP primary runoff in favor of Mike Boyce, a retired Marine colonel. Lee paid a penalty for looking like a bully on the path to getting...
High-rise offices, apartments in the shadow of Braves stadium

High-rise offices, apartments in the shadow of Braves stadium

More high-rise office and residential towers are coming to Cumberland. Cobb Commissioners on Tuesday approved a new mixed-use development to replace the Galleria 75 building at the intersection of Cobb Galleria Parkway and Cumberland Boulevard. Preferred Apartment Communities will build a 15-story office tower; two 19-story residential towers containing a combined 600 units; and a fourth, smaller...
Commissioner: Tritt property not on Cobb parks list

Commissioner: Tritt property not on Cobb parks list

A developer has backed off a controversial plan to build senior housing in East Cobb, but the property won’t become county greenspace, as some residents wanted. A group of greenspace advocates calling themselves Friends of Tritt Park have been urging the county commission to “save” the 54-acre tract on Roswell Road owned by Wylene Tritt. The property was first identified as potential...
Braves’ partners to soon start pre-leasing apartments at SunTrust Park

Braves’ partners to soon start pre-leasing apartments at SunTrust Park

Want to live next to SunTrust Park? Pre-leasing of three apartment communities within The Battery Atlanta project will start in December, with units opening in March, just weeks before the opening of the Braves new Cobb County ballpark, the development team said Wednesday. Apartment giant Pollack Shores said communities within the combined Home at the Battery Atlanta — The Residences, The Flats...
Cobb County suggests no parking ban around SunTrust Park

Cobb County suggests no parking ban around SunTrust Park

Cobb County commissioners seem poised to reverse a ban on private lots offering paid, game-day parking near the Atlanta Braves’ new stadium. Proposed changes to the ordinance, obtained this week by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, have been circulated to some impacted property owners. There will be three public hearings on the revisions, with Oct. 25 being the earliest possible vote by Cobb...
Dark money helped fund Tim Lee’s re-election bid in Cobb

Dark money helped fund Tim Lee’s re-election bid in Cobb

Tim Lee’s contentious battle to retain his job as chairman of the Cobb County Commission attracted more than $143,000 in secret money that was used in a failed attempt to influence voters and keep him in office, an Atlanta Journal-Constitution analysis has found. The so-called dark money came from a non-profit social-welfare organization that is not required to disclose its donor list, meaning...
Bridge to Braves stadium to go forward as Cobb defers legal challenge

Bridge to Braves stadium to go forward as Cobb defers legal challenge

A legal challenge threatening to halt construction of a bridge over Interstate 285 to SunTrust Park, future home of the Atlanta Braves, could be lifted as soon as Monday, but the saga is far from over. Cobb officials are weighing a proposal from a group of business owners that would allow the county to continue building the bridge while preserving the right of affected parties to seek rulings...
A tale of two Atlanta stadiums: Political fortunes rise, fall in deals

A tale of two Atlanta stadiums: Political fortunes rise, fall in deals

Two stadiums backed by hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars. Two strong-willed politicians at the center of the deals. Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed coasted to re-election. Cobb County Commission Chairman Tim Lee was buried by his opponent in a runoff last month. The Falcons’ Mercedes-Benz Stadium in downtown Atlanta and SunTrust Park in Cobb County, future home of the Atlanta Braves...
Braves to push back start time for games at new stadium

Braves to push back start time for games at new stadium

The Atlanta Braves announced Wednesday that next season’s weekday games will begin at 7:30 p.m. to try to accommodate rush hour traffic in the Cumberland area. Traffic has been a concern among residents and fans since the Braves’ move to SunTrust Park in Cobb County was announced in 2013. The first Braves game in the new stadium will be a March 31 exhibiton game against the New York Yankees...
Braves to push back start time at new stadium

Braves to push back start time at new stadium

The Atlanta Braves announced Wednesday that next season’s weekday games will begin at 7:30 p.m. to try to accommodate rush hour traffic in the Cumberland area. Traffic has been a concern among residents and fans since the Braves move to SunTrust Park in Cobb County was announced in 2013. Mike Plant, president of development for the team, and several engineers from Kimley-Horn & Associates...
Moving beyond the Braves: Some question Boyce’s vision for Cobb

Moving beyond the Braves: Some question Boyce’s vision for Cobb

In phone calls, at candidate forums and on doorsteps, retired marine Col. Mike Boyce had one question for voters as he campaigned to replace Tim Lee as the Cobb County Commission chairman: If we can vote on a $40 million park bond, why can’t we vote on a $400 million stadium? That appeal to lingering resentment over way the Atlanta Braves ended up relocating to Cobb County — without public...
Cobb voters send message on transparency and openness with Lee ouster

Cobb voters send message on transparency and openness with Lee ouster

Three years after they were denied the opportunity to cast a ballot for or against bringing the Atlanta Braves to Cobb County, voters have ousted the architect of that plan, Chairman Tim Lee, from office. Lee lost his bid for reelection this week to retired marine Col. Mike Boyce, who ran on a platform of transparency after Lee struck a closed-door deal with the Braves that included committing...
Battlelines drawn over Braves stadium in Cobb chairman race

Battlelines drawn over Braves stadium in Cobb chairman race

A quiet ground war is being waged in Cobb County. Foot soldiers go door to door, recruiting support for their side in a power struggle over the future of the county, where a half-a-billion-dollar sports stadium is pitting neighbor against neighbor. The final battle will take place on July 26, when incumbent Tim Lee will face off against Mike Boyce, a retired marine colonel, in a runoff for county...
SunTrust Park parking restricted near Cobb County stadium

SunTrust Park parking restricted near Cobb County stadium

Update: The Atlanta Braves have released a parking plan for SunTrust Park, which includes a lineup of 19 parking lots and decks. Editor’s note: After the story was published, the parking restrictions were suspended, and then changed so that lots within a half mile of the stadium can charge for parking on game days and other stadium events. Original story: Fred Beloin and his partners...
Additional tax rate cuts proposed for Cobb

Additional tax rate cuts proposed for Cobb

Cobb Commission Chairman Tim Lee said this week he will recommend cutting the rates for taxes that fund fire and debt service. Along with a previously agreed upon cut to the general fund millage rate, county taxpayers could see a net decrease of 0.5 mills from last year’s rate, but an increase in assessments means some homeowners would still see their tax bills go up. Lee, who is running for...
Political scientist: Lee needs grass-roots approach in Cobb runoff

Political scientist: Lee needs grass-roots approach in Cobb runoff

Four years ago, Tim Lee turned a ton of money, the backing of the business community, and the all-important designation of “incumbent” into a resounding victory in the race for Cobb Commission chairman. Tuesday, he once again had all of that going for him but barely hung on to force a July 26 runoff election. Mike Boyce — the same man who lost to Lee by 12,000 votes in 2012 &mdash...
Braves project adds to entertainment lineup

Braves project adds to entertainment lineup

The Atlanta Braves are enlisting some star power to launch the entertainment district next to SunTrust Park. The Braves and partner Fuqua Development on Thursday announced several new signed tenants at The Battery Atlanta, including burger concept Wahlburgers by chef Paul Wahlberg and his actor brothers Mark and Donnie Wahlberg. The opening of the restaurant outside the Braves’ new Cobb County...
Cobb reconsidering use of SPLOST funds for Braves bridge

Cobb reconsidering use of SPLOST funds for Braves bridge

During a televised debate last week among candidates for Cobb Commission chairman, incumbent Tim Lee was asked if he approved of using Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax money to pay for construction costs of the I-285 bridge to SunTrust Park. Lee said definitively that no SPLOST cash would be used for construction of the $10 million project. “The bridge construction costs will have no SPLOST...
Braves and Coke renew contract, add Coke name to Roxy

Braves and Coke renew contract, add Coke name to Roxy

The more things change, the more they stay the same. The Atlanta Braves may be moving to Cobb County next year, but the team’s relationships with hometown beverage giant Coca-Cola remains as strong as ever. The Braves announced today that they have struck a multi-year deal to keep Coke as its non-alcoholic beverage of choice when the team moves to SunTrust Park next season. “Coca-Cola...
Braves announce SunTrust Park ‘zip line’

Braves announce SunTrust Park ‘zip line’

The Atlanta Braves announced Friday that they will have a “Zip Line” in SunTrust Park,when it opens for the 2017 season, according to the Atlanta Business Chronicle. The amenity was announced by Derek Schiller, the team’s executive vice president of sales and marketing, during the annual Business of Sports Summit on Friday. According to The Business Chronicle: “The Braves are...
Man arrested at Ohio Trump rally has ties to Atlanta

Man arrested at Ohio Trump rally has ties to Atlanta

The man with metro Atlanta ties who rushed the stage this weekend at an Ohio Donald Trump rally denied having ties to ISIS during a CNN interview on Sunday. Thomas Dimassimo, whose mother is former Cobb County Transportation Director Faye DiMassimo, told CNN that a video of him with Islamic writing and music was doctored. The video, which shows him dragging an American flag on the ground, was taken...
City, Hawks discussing big mixed-use project at Philips Arena

City, Hawks discussing big mixed-use project at Philips Arena

The Atlanta Hawks are in discussions to redevelop the area surrounding Philips Arena into a mixed-use entertainment district, multiple people with knowledge of the negotiations told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The plan, which would involve investments of hundreds of millions of dollars, could rank among the largest commercial redevelopments conceived for downtown Atlanta in a generation, according...
Plaza for Braves bridge removed to save money

Plaza for Braves bridge removed to save money

After making the long trek across the bridge to SunTrust Park, pedestrians were going to be treated to a park-like plaza with manicured landscaping, a fountain of water cascading down steps, benches and an elevator to get back up to the bridge. All of that is gone now, victim of the political desire to keep the bridges’ cost under $10 million. A new $9.4 million estimate for the 1,100-foot bridge...
Cobb considers condemnation for bridge to SunTrust Park

Cobb considers condemnation for bridge to SunTrust Park

Cobb County’s Department of Transportation is asking commissioners to approve condemnation proceedings for portions of three properties needed to build a bridge over Interstate 285, from the county’s convention center to SunTrust Park and the Braves mixed-use development. Commissioners will vote on the measure Tuesday night. Interim Cobb transportation director Jim Wilgus said the county...
Cobb considers condemnation for parcels for bridge to Braves’ site

Cobb considers condemnation for parcels for bridge to Braves’ site

Cobb County’s transportation department is asking for permission to condemn small patches of some of the most expensive real estate — and air space — in the county so it can build the bridge over Interstate 285, from the county’s convention center to SunTrust Park and the Braves mixed-use development. The bridge is being constructed in Cobb’s employment hub, and is considered...
Atlanta bank insists Super Bowl ad doesn’t try to sell anything

Atlanta bank insists Super Bowl ad doesn’t try to sell anything

SunTrust is spending what is surely a vault full of money to run a new TV commercial during the Super Bowl, the most hyped time of our marketing year. And at first blush the bank’s ad might seem like an odd fit. For one thing, SunTrust executives say they aren’t trying to sell us any products or services. (Instead, they say they want to inspire a movement for people to reduce financial...
Moody’s: New stadiums bring risks for taxpayers

Moody’s: New stadiums bring risks for taxpayers

A wave of pro sports teams seeking new homes will more than double the number of stadiums being built over the next three years, adding new risks for local governments backing them, a bond rating agency said Tuesday. Local governments shoulder significant risks if they issue bonds to help bankroll stadium projects that are typically “highly leveraged,” Moody’s Investors Service said...
Public tab for Philips rehab could be $150M

Public tab for Philips rehab could be $150M

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed says a renovation of Philips Arena, key to keeping the Atlanta Hawks in downtown, could be a $200 million to $300 million project, and the public’s tab could be as high as $150 million. Reed’s comments in an interview Monday with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution were the first indication of how much public funding might be involved in the rehab plan, which came...
Reed: City could handle $100M-$150M for Philips Arena redo

Reed: City could handle $100M-$150M for Philips Arena redo

A renovation of Philips Arena, a key component of keeping the Atlanta Hawks in downtown, could be a $200 million to $300 million project, and Mayor Kasim Reed said Monday the public portion of that deal could be as high as $150 million. In an interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Reed reiterated his stance that he expects to reach a deal to overhaul the downtown arena in the first quarter...
Metro jobless rate slides below 5 percent

Metro jobless rate slides below 5 percent

Metro Atlanta’s unemployment rate slid to 4.9 percent at the end of last year, the lowest level since before the recession began in late 2007, the Georgia Labor Department announced Thursday. The December number was unchanged from the revised rate for November. “It’s very, very good progress that we’ve seen in the Atlanta over the last 12 months,” Labor Commissioner Mark...
Braves bridge design over 285 to SunTrust Park ready to proceed

Braves bridge design over 285 to SunTrust Park ready to proceed

Design of the bridge over Interstate 285, which will connect the Braves stadium and mixed use development with the Cobb County’s convention and performing arts centers, received approval from county commissioners Tuesday night and a key Galleria Authority committee Wednesday morning. The bridge will carry both pedestrians and transit vehicles, but Commission Chairman Tim Lee’s office confirmed...
Cobb County Commission to revisit parks bonds

Cobb County Commission to revisit parks bonds

After seven years of Cobb commissioners ignoring voters’ overwhelming approval for spending $40 million to preserve green space, Chairman Tim Lee is now suggesting the county spend less than half of that amount to preserve the county’s dwindling wild lands. The $40 million approved by voters in 2008 was never spent because of the sinking economy. But two years ago, Lee and his fellow commissioners...
Video gives public first look at bridge to SunTrust Park

Video gives public first look at bridge to SunTrust Park

Cobb County Commissioners on Tuesday got their first look at the bridge over Interstate 285 to SunTrust Park — through an animated video that shows the concrete structure with brick pavings, planters, light poles and a brief stretch of canopy over the center of the 1,100-foot span to give fans a respite from the sun or rain. The county’s bridge consultants also gave an update on the project...