Atlanta Falcons’ New Stadium: Will Arthur Blank Settle for Second Choice?

By Leigh Allen
Atlanta Falcons Arthur Blank New Stadium
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

It’s looking more and more like the number one desired site for the new Atlanta Falcons stadium will not be attainable.

The stalemate on the negotiations for the buyout of Friendship Baptist church continues, and neither party is budging. The difference between the $15.5 million offer from stadium proponents and the $24.5 million that the church wants has presented a wide chasm that may not be bridged. The church knows how badly their area is wanted for the stadium.

But are they taking advantage of that power? Only to a point.

Friendship Baptist has been a staple of the area since 1862, and there is much to be said for history. How much history must be destroyed to bring about progress, considering that ‘progress’ may be too strong a term to begin with? If too much heart is sacrificed, another part of the city’s soul could well be lost.

Where is Falcons’ owner Arthur Blank in all this?

Silent, but probably only for the moment. Blank wants the site south of the Georgia Dome, and most likely he’s furiously working behind the scenes to ensure his vision becomes a reality.

What’s the problem with taking the north site on empty land at Ivan Allen Drive and Northside? The north site isn’t easily accessible to the MARTA station, for one thing. That half-mile hike to get back to the MARTA station wouldn’t be ideal—or attractive—to anyone.

It’s a double-edged sword for both sides. August 1 is the current deadline to choose the site and again attempt to move forward…depending on how much both sides are willing to cut and where stadium proponents have to go from there.


Leigh Allen is an NFL Atlanta Falcons writer for Follow her on Twitter, on Facebook, and on Google+.

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