Atlanta Gulch Project fails to get nessesscary votes to support independent audit

An effort by members of Atlanta City Council to get an audit of the $5 billion Gulch developmentproposal failed Monday to win the eight council votes needed to pass.

The failure to approve the outside review could keep the project on track for a council vote at its next meeting Oct. 15. Last month, Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms delayed a vote on the Gulch dealbecause of a lack of council support.

Developer CIM Group has proposed a mini-city of offices, hotels, apartments and retail between the Five Points MARTA station and Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Eight council members, a voting majority, sponsored the audit legislation. But three, including one sponsor, council members were absent from Monday’s meeting, and co-sponsor Michael Julian Bond was not in the room when the vote was taken. It ended up two votes short of the eight needed to pass.

Several community groups spoke in favor of the audit, while others urged council to reject the deal, saying promises of affordable housing and other public benefits weren’t sufficient.

District 9 Councilman Dustin Hillis was in support of an independent audit of the more than 650 page deal with CIM Group. Farokhi, Natalyn Archibong, Jennifer Ide, J.P. Matzigkeit and Matt Westmoreland also voted if support.

Torrie Redding