ATLANTA (AP) _ A group of historic preservationists has formed to try and stop the demolition of the building that housed Atlanta's oldest black newspaper. A public hearing on the building's fate is planned for Mach 28.
The tornado-damaged building on Auburn Avenue once housed the Atlanta Daily World. The newspaper operated at the site until 2008, when a twister that tore through downtown Atlanta severely damaged the building.
A developer, the Integral Group, has submitted a demolition application to the Atlanta Urban Design Commission. Integral wants to build 91 apartments at the site.
The Daily World was a primary source of information to the black community through the civil rights era, historians say.
A plan calls for demolishing some of the building, but leaving the façade from the original structure. Preservationists don't think that's acceptable. They say that many other historic buildings in the Sweet Auburn neighborhood have been torn down, one reason they're trying to save the old newspaper building.
“Atlanta can say, `Yes, we're the cradle of the civil rights movement,' but we've destroyed any evidence of that,'' said Boyd Coons, executive director of the Atlanta Preservation Center.
The Atlanta Daily World was founded in 1928 by William A. Scott II. The newspaper was recently acquired by a partnership led by owners of Detroit-based Real Times Media. It now operates out of a location in East Point.