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Atlantic Steel

Atlantic Steel: Stakeholder Involvement Plan

Atlantic Steel Redevelopment XL Project
Stakeholder Involvement Plan


Stakeholder involvement is considered essential by the Atlantic Steel Redevelopment Team and has been an important part of the concept and rezoning considerations since the project began in early 1997. It is important to note that multiple public meetings, discussion groups, individual contacts, and a full public notice and review process relative to this project was held during the rezoning of this property. That process included involvement of the City of Atlanta Planning Department, Georgia Department of Transportation, Atlanta Regional Commission, nine neighborhood organizations, and several other groups such as the Midtown Alliance and Georgia Tech. These groups collaborated on the concept, design, and conditions put in place in the rezoning document. These changes and conditions replaced the existing land use zoning classification of industrial with a mixed-use classification including residential, retail, office, and hospitality at urban densities. After the public input and review, the rezoning was approved by each of the involved neighborhoods 9-0, the City of Atlanta Zoning Review Board 9-0, recommended to the City Council by the Zoning Committee 5-0, and passed by the Atlanta City Council 15-0. The order was signed by Mayor Bill Campbell as soon as it passed through the City Council approval mechanism. This process began in May 1997 and continues today, as one of the agreements was that a periodical status report would be given.

This Stakeholder Involvement Plan is intended to supplement previous activities and describe the basic methods by which additional input can be solicited and received particularly as it relates to Project XL. Stakeholder input will be used to refine and establish community goals of the Atlantic Steel Redevelopment and will be incorporated into the Final Project Agreement (FPA). Stakeholder input will also help develop the program specifics and evaluate project performance.

Goals and Objectives

The goals of the early stakeholder input and this Stakeholder Involvement Plan is to ensure that interested stakeholders are afforded the opportunity to participate in the success of this project and to provide the stakeholders with the information they need to participate in decisions on the future of the Atlantic Steel Redevelopment.

The following are the objectives of this plan:

Identify Stakeholders and their role in this project:
*Describe methods of communication between the project sponsor and the stakeholders
*Ensure all stakeholders have an opportunity to participate in the project
*Promote stakeholder involvement in the development of the FPA
*Assure all previously involved stakeholders that discussions, agreements, and contracts, particularly relating to zoning conditions remain fully intact.

Identification of Stakeholders

Stakeholders include any individuals, government organizations, neighborhood organizations, academic centers, and companies with an interest in the progress of the Atlantic Steel Redevelopment Project. The identification of Stakeholders will be based on inviting those who are already involved in other environmental projects with the Atlantic Steel Redevelopment, contacting others with related interests, and by general invitation to the local population. Stakeholders provide information on the preferences of the community and may also identify un-addressed issues.

Stakeholders in the XL program typically fall into three categories; direct participants (EPA, Jacoby Development, Law Engineering, Moreland Altobelli, ldf Associates), commentors (EPD, FHWA, MARTA, City of Atlanta, GDOT, The Georgia Conservancy, Atlanta Regional Commission, Sierra Club, Southface Energy Institute, Environmental Defense Fund, Georgians for Transportation Alternatives, etc.), and the general public.

Direct participants will work intensively with the Environmental Protection Agency and the Atlantic Steel Redevelopment team on designing and developing the project.

Advisory committee members are considered direct participants and could include representatives from local government offices, educational institutions, special interest groups, and interested members of the public.

Commentors have an interest in the project, but do not desire to participate as intensively in the project's development. Commentors will typically want to be kept informed on project development, attend public meetings, and contribute their comments and advice in written or verbal form.

Members of the general public might choose not to become directly involved in the project, but will be given easy access to the project development process and to information about the environmental results during project implementation. Members of the general public have the opportunity to participate more actively if they choose to.

Contacting potential stakeholders will occur prior to and during development of the FPA. At that time direct participantswill be invited to sit on one of the advisory committees. Commentors will be put on a project mailing list to ensure that they are informed of all opportunities to comment or participate during project development and implementation. The following methods will be used to contact and inform potential stakeholders.

Local Newspapers: Display and/or legal ads will be taken out in the major local newspapers to invite the general public to public meetings and inform them of comment periods.

News Media Notice: A notice of this project and public meetings will be sent to the news departments of the local newspapers, and other published media and local radio.

Cable Television: Notices of public meetings and comment period will be sent to the community access cable station for broadcast during the community events segment. If possible, the public meetings may be taped and then broadcast on the community access station.

Newsletters / Fact Sheets: Newsletters including Fact Sheets will be mailed to everyone on the current mailing list as part of the public notice of meetings and comment periods. These mailings will include status reports, timelines, mileposts, contacts, and future meeting times and locations.

Internet: A public web site will be established in conjunction with the EPA Project XL web page. This site, will provide access to announcements, project background and documents, meeting minutes, project developments and implementation status, and provide an internet address for comment submittal.

Information Repository: An information repository for the project will be established at the local branch of the Fulton County Public Library System.

Invitation: The following groups will be invited by phone, mail, or electronic mail to become direct participants in project development (this list is not all inclusive).

Public Meetings: Public Meetings will be held to both inform the general public about the project, and to invite their comments and participation. The first public meeting was held September 15. This meeting introduced the public to the project and to the XL process. Other public meetings may be held during development and implementation of the FPA based on public interest or as decided by the direct participants. Public meeting locations will be chosen to provide adequate size and accessibility to all that wish to attend. A trained facilitator will be provided to assist in the conduct of the public meetings.

Training: When requested by members of the stakeholder group, project briefings will be provided to ensure that members have the information they need to participate effectively. These briefings could include discussions of technical issues associated with the project, as well as the public participation process.

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