PTC officials court small college

Tue, 04/29/2008 - 3:45pm
By: John Munford

9 other communities in running for relocated Atlanta Christian College; Wilksmoor Village seen as ideal site

Local officials are hoping to woo a private four-year college to relocate from East Point to Peachtree City.

The target of their desire is Atlanta Christian College, which enrolls approximately 400 students and has degree programs in seven areas of study.

Peachtree City hopes to be one of the finalists for the college’s selection committee, as proposals are due Wednesday, said City Councilman Don Haddix.

The college is hoping to get a 50-acre campus and the “prime location” eyed by local supporters is in Wilksmoor Village where the MacDuff Parkway extension is being built, Haddix said. Wilksmoor is the new name for what has been known for years as the West Village, the quadrant north of Ga. Highway 54 West and west of Ga. Highway 74 North.

“The site is ideal in being easy to find, has high visibility and, being undeveloped, ACC, Peachtree City and the developers can work together to provide a ‘complete package,’ not just add a college,” Haddix said.

There has also been some talk about joining ACC with the public Clayton State University which is also exploring its options in Peachtree City, Haddix said.

A presentation package has been prepared with the assistance of the Fayette County Development Authority in hopes of luring ACC to Peachtree City, Haddix said. Other cities hoping to be in the running include Newnan, Forest Park and Locust Grove for a total of about nine competitors, Haddix said.

East Point is also making a bid to keep ACC in its jurisdiction, Haddix noted.

Haddix said he and fellow Councilman Doug Sturbaum have been working with local businessman Mark Hollums, a friend of ACC, on the project since November.The three have worked with the Fayette County Board of Education, developers, landowners and interim facility owners to put together the final package for ACC’s consideration, Haddix said.

It is not known when ACC expects to make its final selection for its new campus, but it could be as early as July, Haddix said.

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Don Haddix's picture
Submitted by Don Haddix on Thu, 05/01/2008 - 2:28pm.

Maybe this link will help answer some of the questions:
Atlanta Christian College

More information will be added as needed.

Thanks for the interest in ACC.

Don Haddix
PTC Councilman
Post 1

Steve Brown's picture
Submitted by Steve Brown on Thu, 05/01/2008 - 7:56am.

I support Councilmen Haddix and Sturbaum on pursuing the campus. Both of the councilmen are proving their worth to our city.

Here are some things I would consider before making a final decision:

1. Know what ACC's future growth plans are and determine whether there is enough available land for them to expand.

2. Be careful with zoning language and plan approval terms. If something goes wrong and ACC either closes or moves, what types of uses could go into their site. Remember, the area is surrounded by residential zoning.

3. The city should conduct an objective traffic plan to determine what the consequences will be and determine if growth of the college can be sustained without serious negative effects on our traffic.

4. If Mr. Hollums has any responsiblity at the college, even with alumni relations, it would be best for him to abstain from any further activity in the negotiating process.

sniffles5's picture
Submitted by sniffles5 on Thu, 05/01/2008 - 11:08am.

(I posted this a couple of days ago but it seems to have disappeared).

According to the Newnan Times-Herald, ACC has received 7 relocation proposals, 4 of them from the "Newnan area".

While I don't oppose the idea of having a college of some sort in Peachtree City, I wonder if ACC is a good fit.

The Times-Herald pointed out that the city of Newnan asked to see the college's books, to see if they had the financial ability to acheive their dream. The college declined to provide any information as to their financial solvency, stating only the "two finalists" would be privy to this info.

The college's president was remarkably candid about his college's failure to execute. Despite the biggest run-up in college enrollment in Georgia history over the past 15 years (due in large part to the HOPE scholarship), ACC has had a "stagnant" (his word) enrollment of 400 or so students, year in, year out.

He also mentioned that the college only offers seven majors (bible studies, early childhood education, business administration, etc) and that they were "stale" offerings.

The college has some very ambitious plans to grow: they want to balloon from 400 students to 1200 students on their new campus. Tripling in size would likely to entail some severe growing pains, especially when you consider this college is regarded as a "residence college" (as opposed to a "commuter college" where most students live at home).

Can the Wilksmoor site handle a resident student population of 1200 on 50 acres? I don't know.

Plus, I recently read (can't find link yet) that college enrollment in general will level off in the year 2010 and actually decline a bit after that. 2010 is reasonably the timeframe when this colleges new buildings can expect to go 'on-line'....meaning that there is the potential for excess capacity chasing increasingly scarce resources.

I'm wondering if the powers-that-be in Peachtree City have thought this proposal all the way through. There seem to be a number of well-meaning ACC alumni here who are smitten with the idea of moving their alma mater to their hometown, but I wonder if any potential adverse impacts have been discussed and measured.

We shall see, I suppose!!
Diagnosing Denise

yardman5508's picture
Submitted by yardman5508 on Thu, 05/01/2008 - 11:17am.

does ACC have a policy against inter-racial dating like Bob Jones U. in Greenville SC.?

Democracy is not a spectator sport.

BPR's picture
Submitted by BPR on Thu, 05/01/2008 - 12:18pm.

does ACC have a policy for students and Professors against smoking pot, drinking, making fun of Preachers and Christians, you don't have to go to church, making jokes about other churches, cussing etc.

BTW- if I were single I would date "The Human Race", what does skin color have to do with it.

Yardman all you have to do is Google and see.Laughing out loud

I didn't go to Bob Jones U.. and I don't know anyone that has.

We Will Stand

Richard Hobbs's picture
Submitted by Richard Hobbs on Thu, 05/01/2008 - 10:55am.

ACC would be an excellent addition to our community. Unfortunately, there is stiff competition coming from other communities such as Newnan, whose downtown square area has seen a real revitalization. The Old Courthouse is still a strong anchor there, and the shops and restaurants makes it a very nice location.

However, I can't imagine a more perfect fit for ACC than PTC. I recall when I first attended ACC, in the fall of 1979, my biggest reservation was where it was located. The crime was a concern, being that close to downtown Atlanta, and I know that that one issue turned many people away from attending. Which is why PTC is such a great location for this campus. I can't imagine the enrollment not increasing, especially in light of the expanding curriculum and how they have a design for their campus that will recognize a symbiotic relationship with its surrounding community. If what I am told does occur, I'd be the first to open my office in their designed cityscape areas.

Again, I may not be in agreement with everything that the Christian Churches profess, but I have always found them to be good examples of caring and loving individuals that will be a huge plus for our community. I just fear that Newnan, or another community might have an edge on us when it comes down to the bottom dollar line.

I just hope that those who are making the decision at ACC, might look at the real quality of life issues that Peachtree City offers which is unique to our community. Peachtree City offers so many intangibles, that is hard to quantify or qualify, and I fear that those factors might not be given the consideration that they deserve.

The Peachtree City Community is truly a community of great people who work very hard in keeping it a terrific place to live, to raise and educate their families, and to do business. This one factor alone, is worth more than any tax advantages or business relationships that can be calculated out on some profit and loss statement.

Again, as many bloggers on this website know, I believe everything can be found in the Movie "Oh Brother Where Art Thou" which reminds me of what Delmar said to his wayward brethren and friends, after being baptized . He said, "C'mon in boys, the water is fine." I'd suggest to those who are the decision makers at ACC, to really look at all of the intanigibles that this community has to offer, and to "C'mon in boys, Peachtree City is fine."

sniffles5's picture
Submitted by sniffles5 on Thu, 05/01/2008 - 11:01am.

I believe they will relocate to Newnan. One of their stated objectives on their relocation FAQ on their website says they want to move from their "secluded neighborhood" locale to a higher visibility location.

PTC, for all its charm and infrastructure, cannot give them the "high visibility" location they desire if they are tucked away in Wilksmoor. Newnan gets the nod by accident of geography and proximity to I-85.
Diagnosing Denise

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