Firefighters tackle a pre-dawn blaze at the old Atlanta Prison Farm. (Courtesy CBS46)

Firefighters were called to the abandoned Atlanta Prison Farm on Key Road this morning to tackle a blaze believed to have been accidentally set by homeless people camping there. According to our media affiliate CBS46, fire personnel arrived on the scene before 7 a.m. to find the building in flames. The prison farm has caught fire numerous times over the years, including a 2009 blaze that caused the roof to collapse. The facility used to be a 700-bed working farm housing minor criminals who received vocational instruction in agricultural and dairy farming.

Big Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church — known for the blue “Jesus Saves” sign atop its steeple — wants to redevelop about 4 acres on its campus, in hopes of sparking more investment in the Sweet Auburn district. According to a report in the Atlanta Business Chronicle, the church and Central Atlanta Progress have issued a request for qualifications to real estate developers. The scope of the proposed redevelopment could include more affordable housing; new apartments; the rehabilitation of existing commercial buildings on Auburn Avenue and the development of new mixed-use projects, according to the request for qualifications.

Georgia’s public high school graduation rate has increased for the third consecutive year, rising from 71.8 percent in 2013 to 72.5 percent in 2014, and rising a total of 5.1 percentage points since 2011, according to the Georgia Department of Education. Read more at Reporter Newspapers.

 

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.