The Buckhead Coalition Takes A Stance On Calls For Cityhood

It has never become an organized movement, but the question has refused to go away completely; should Buckhead become a city independent of Atlanta? When I asked that question of former mayor Sam Massell in 2015, his answer was blunt:

“There is sentiment for that [Buckhead becoming a city], I am opposed to it, and I have been able to stop it up until this point, I think it’s a mistake. It would bankrupt Atlanta and stop all growth; the economy would die.

Buckhead has 84,000 people, 29 million sq ft of office space, 1,500 retail units and 5,300 hotel rooms,  – I mean it’s like a city. It’s got a skyline, it’s definitely a factor that protects the rest of Atlanta. We have 20% of Atlanta’s population, 20% of the land area of Atlanta, we pay 45% of the taxes. Everyone in Buckhead wants to protect Buckhead because it protects the rest of the city.”

Mayor Sam Massell

Now that we are in the “Post Massell Era,” the leadership baton has been passed to the very capable Jim Durrett. Some voices have again been agitating for Buckhead cityhood (mostly from the safety of social media). In an interview last week with Buckhead.com Durrett was asked about this idea. Today, he responded with Joe Evans on behalf of the Buckhead Coalition with a clear and unequivocal response:

"The Buckhead Coalition has historically opposed the incorporation of Buckhead into a separate city, and the Coalition leadership would like at this time to reaffirm that stance. Our partnering organizations – the Buckhead Community Improvement District, Livable Buckhead and Buckhead Business Association – share this vision. Now, as much as at any time in our history, we believe Atlantans need to come together across racial, geographic, and economic differences to find common ground and build a more unified community. The Buckhead Coalition is committed to working with City Government to ensure that the businesses and residents of our City are supported with the necessary municipal services and to build a more cohesive, equitable, safe, and prosperous city for all."

Jim Durrett and Joe Evans, Buckhead Coalition