ALBANY, GA (WALB) - City leaders are revamping one downtown building, hoping to bring life to the vacant property.
The building used to house Albany’s Water, Gas, and Light, but it now sits empty. And it’s far from the only vacant property in the downtown area. But city commissioners may have just ignited the spark of a whole redevelopment project.
“Building new buildings and bringing new opportunities to Albany would be a great opportunity for the city and the community,” said Daymond Roberts, an Albany resident.
While there won’t be construction on any new buildings downtown quite yet, city leaders are working to take old buildings and redevelop them. Giving a new worth to properties you may pass by everyday but have already written off in your mind. Starting with 207 Pine Avenue.
“Great idea for the Albany community because there’s a lot of youth that’s getting directed in the wrong directions,” said Roberts.
City commissioners have transferred ownership of the property to the Downtown Development Authority. The goal: transforming the vacant space into something of use, a building the community would be proud to host in their downtown area.
“If it’s a fresh start, basically consistency. If we can be consistent about it, everything will be great,” Roberts said.
But not every commissioner is on board, concerned it’s not the right time to take on a potentially costly project.
“Given the mindset of people in storm recovery mode, and the taxpayers are real sensitive about how we spend money,” said Ward 4 Commissioner Roger Marietta.
A man WALB spoke to said he’s ready to only look ahead in terms of revamping downtown Albany.
“In the future it can be better if we all stick together and do what we’re supposed to do,” said Roberts.
The city will now start applying for grants to fund the redevelopment project.