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Decatur Planning Commission signs off on plan to develop Thankful Baptist parking lot

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Decatur Planning Commission signs off on plan to develop Thankful Baptist parking lot

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Thankful Missionary Baptist Church. Photo obtained via Google Street View

A plan to develop a gravel lot owned by Thankful Baptist Church in Decatur has cleared one of its biggest hurdles.

On May 8,  the Planning Commission approved zoning for the project, which it had been considering since October, when the commission said plans for the projected needed to be revised. A developer for the project has not been identified, City Planning Director Angela Threadgill said.

Threadgill said the Planning Commission approved a plan that would create 13 housing units: three single family homes on Mead Road, six town homes on Mead Road and four live-work town homes along W. College Avenue.

“That did get a favorable recommendation of approval from the Planning Commission, so it’s going to be forwarded to the City Commission for a hearing on May 21,” Threadgill said. “It is being recommended for approval with some conditions. Those conditions are related to some of the design features of the building.”

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She said the “live-work” spaces could be used as residences or for a personal services business, like a hair salon.

A consultant to Thankful Missionary Baptist Church in October announced plans to sell one acre of its property.

The church, in turn, will use proceeds from the sale to fund much needed improvements to the space it has occupied since 1971. The congregation is considerably older, founded in 1882, making it the oldest African American Baptist church in Decatur and the second oldest in DeKalb County. The church moved to West College when the church’s location on Atlanta Avenue was destroyed by fire. The church has around 250 active members. The gravel parking lot that is up for sale was originally purchased to build a sanctuary that is no longer needed.

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