Georgia State University and a developer have officially acquired the Atlanta Braves' former baseball stadium.
The university says it has finalized the $30 million acquisition of Turner Field in Atlanta and plans to convert it to a football venue as well as a mix of housing, retail and academic space. To carry out the project, the school has entered into a joint venture with developers Carter, Healey Weatherholtz Properties and Oakwood Development.
Georgia State plans to have the converted ready for the university's 2017 football season next fall. Turner Field had a capacity of more than 49,000, but the conversion will create a new seating bowl initially with 23,000 seats; future phases could add 10,000 more seats.
The Braves are leaving Turner Field and Atlanta for a new baseball field, SunTrust Park, in Cobb County, Ga. It is scheduled to be ready for the beginning of the 2017 season.
The development agreement calls for Georgia State to control 38 acres of Turner Field, including the stadium and the Blue Lot, which was the site of the Atlanta Fulton County Stadium. That was where the Braves played before the team moved to Turner Field, which was built as a venue for the 1996 Summer Olympics.
The Carter-led joint venture is buying 16 acres and ground-leasing an additional 13.5 acres from Georgia State.
The stadium conversion will begin in February. A future phase of Georgia State’s portion of the redevelopment is planned to include a new baseball park at the site where Atlanta Fulton County Stadium once stood.
The Carter-led private development team will immediately commence plans for private student housing, market-rate multifamily housing and retail space.
The Atlanta Fulton County Recreation Authority, which owned Turner Field, agreed in August to sell the property for $30 million. The University System of Georgia Board of Regents approved the sale in November.