APS board OKs $112,500 to buy property in eminent domain area

The Atlanta school board agreed to pay nearly $30,000 more than it previously authorized to purchase a residential property the district had included in eminent domain proceedings. 

The school board on Tuesday approved payment of $112,500 for property at 698 Francis Place N.W. The district says it needs the site to build a new school for Woodson Park Academy. 

Last month, the board agreed to begin eminent domain proceedings to acquire that property and eight others after officials said they were unable to negotiate a deal to buy them. 

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That happened after the board in February approved spending $83,200 to buy the 698 Francis Place property, whose appraised value is $28,900, according to the Fulton County Assessors Office. 

The new academy building is scheduled to open in 2020 at the site of the former Woodson Elementary School. The academy was created by merging Woodson Elementary and Grove Park Intermediate. Atlanta Public Schools will contribute $18.5 million toward the $34 million school construction cost, with the Grove Park Foundation raising money to pay the remainder. 

The property purchase was approved as part of a package of operations, finance, policy and other proposals on the board’s consent agenda, which the board approves with a single vote. The consent agenda was approved by a vote of 7-1 with board member Leslie Grant opposed and Kandis Wood Jackson absent.

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