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Five companies bid on Pullman Yard property

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Five companies bid on Pullman Yard property

The Pullman Yard in Kirkwood. Photo by Dan Whisenhunt

The Pullman Yard in Kirkwood. Photo by Dan Whisenhunt

The Georgia Building Authority has announced the names of five bidders who want to buy the state-owned Pullman Yard property.

The bidders are:

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Atomic Entertainment, LLC  – Bid: $8 million

Fabric Developers and Civitas Housing Group, a joint venture – Bid: $8 million

Jojo Investments, LLC – Bid: $5.7 million

Pope & Land Enterprises, Inc. – Bid: $5.6 million

Pratt-Pullman Partners, LLC – Bid: $5.65 million

The minimum bid was $5.6 million. There has been a push from community members to preserve the historic structures on the site. While the state has declined to answer questions about the sale of the 27-acre property, it has made clear that preservation is not its primary concern. Questions about the history of the property were among the questions bidders asked the GBA, according to a list of questions posted on the state website. The questions were repeatedly ignored by state officials.

Here’s one example:

Q: What is the reasoning that historic preservation was taken out of this bid?

A: This question is not specific to the current [Invitation to Bid] and/or the property; therefore no response is given.

In late November the Atlanta Urban Design Commission backed away from a proposal that would’ve given Kirkwood’s Pullman Yard landmark status. The state pressured the Urban Design Commission to drop its proposal, saying it was immune to any actions taken by the city to preserve the structure.

While the GBA has not made historic preservation a priority, its bid documents do give some of the history of the site.

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.

The GBA is expected to select a winning bidder in June.

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