Senate resolution requests preservation of Kirkwood’s Pullman YardThe Pullman Yard in Kirkwood. Photo by Dan Whisenhunt
This story has been updated.
Two state senators are sponsoring a resolution that asks the Georgia Building Authority to request buyers preserve the Pullman Yard, which is currently for sale.
The resolution, sponsored by Sens. Vincent Fort and Elena Parent, asks GBA to revise its invitation to bid “to include deed restrictions in an effort to protect the historic and environmental resources of this presently publicly owned property.”
Decaturish left a message with Fort seeking comment. Parent said members of the community asked for the resolution.
“I absolutely feel passionate about protecting some of the historic buildings on that site for sure,” Parent said. “I want to make sure that’s done. Whether it’s done through the bid process here or it’s done at the city level through historic preservation is open to debate.”
In late November the Atlanta Urban Design Commission backed away from a proposal that would’ve given Kirkwood’s Pullman Yard landmark status. The designation would’ve required any developer to preserve historic elements of the property. Weeks later, the state put the 27 acre site on the market for sale to the highest bidder. The state is not requiring that the buildings on the property be preserved, though the bid documents note the historic nature of the site.
GBA has declined to comment on the pending sale and said there is no way for the public to share its views about what should be done with the property. The minimum bid is $5.6 million.
According to the bid documents, The Pratt-Pullman Yard – originally farmland purchased in 1904 by the Pratt Engineering Company for a sugar and fertilizer processing plant – was used for munitions manufacturing during World War I. It was purchased in 1922 by the Pullman Passenger Rail Company and used as a rail car service and repair facility. Southern Iron and Equipment Company used it from 1955 to the 1970’s. The facility was closed after the federal court order split up the Pullman Passenger Rail Company. Georgia Power used the facility for its fleet of Trackless Trolleys, a name for electric buses. The Georgia Building Authority bought the property in 1990. It was briefly used as part of the New Georgia Railroad, a dinner train running from Underground Atlanta to Stone Mountain. In recent years, it has become a popular filming location.
Here is the full senate resolution: