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May 28, 2020 City Council Regular Meeting
43. Consideration for the Release of an RFP to Seek a Public-Private Partnership (P3) For Future Development of the Fairgrounds, Including a Master Plan
Strategic Priority
Neighborhood Revitalization

ISSUE: Consideration for the release of an RFP to seek a Public-Private Partnership (P3) future development of the Fairgrounds, including a Master Plan.

BACKGROUND: During the April 16 Executive Session, Council discussed potential uses of six City-owned parcels, including the Fairgrounds. While a workshop was planned for further discussion on the Fairgrounds, Council instead agreed to discuss at the May 28 meeting.


  1. The Fairgounds Property totals 67 acres near the Tatemville Community. It is zoned C-R with Property Identification Number 2-0108-01-001. Of the 67 acres, 40 acres remains within a flood plain. The balance of the property remains outside of the floodplain. The City’s due diligence includes an ALTA survey and Phase I environmental study, which will be made available.
  2. Council acquired the parcel in 2015. Councils have previously considered various uses of the property, including mixed-income housing (similar to Savannah Gardens) with recreation, just recreation, film and television soundstages, music studios, police precinct, mixed commercial uses, lease to non-profits and a mix of the prior considerations, the City is offering to co-develop the property for purposes that benefit public use and private investment.
  3. The RFP (Request for Proposals), which was adapted from an RFP prepared for SEDA to seek a P3 development for a sound stage on other property that SEDA owns, focuses on a film/television sound stage, music studios and production offices. It is expected that the designated co-developer as a first step will prepare and present a Master Plan acceptable to the City to guide future development as well as a Development Agreement that designates the City’s and Developer’s responsibilities. The project may be completed in multiple phases.
  4. The Economic Impact shall be a high priority in responding to the RFP, specifically demonstrated economic impact with measurable outcomes and inclusion of a workforce development plan for job creation and business development opportunities.


The Fairgrounds remains the single largest underutilized property holding of the City of Savannah. Its future should be considered within the context of how future development best serves the City.


For Council consideration whether to direct the City Manager to begin legal advertising the RFP.

Patrick Monahan, City Manager
Financial Impact
Review Comments
Exhibit 1: RFP - Fairgrounds.pdf
Agenda Plus