Part of closed Atlanta Medical Center to be used as homeless shelter

Part of the now-shuttered Atlanta Medical Center is getting a new purpose.

City leaders say the facility's old athletic club will be turned into an emergency homeless shelter.

According to Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens, the building, located at the intersection of Parkway and Highland drives, would offer a variety of services, including housing options and medical care.

The site has been vacant since November 2022, when Wellstar closed the health center citing "revenue losses."

The hospital operated a busy emergency room and was a vital health care provider for many low-income residents in the area.

Since its closure, the site has remained vacant after Dickens banned any possible development - preventing Wellstar from repurposing the site until April.

Dickens has previously stated that new developments on the property should have some healthcare facilities that would offer services to benefit residents.

One proposal for the site came from Atlanta City Councilwoman Keisha Sean-Waites, who introduced legislation last year to turn the vacant building into a multipurpose community center named after the late Congressman John Lewis.

The community wellness center includes plans for transitional housing, a health clinic, a mini courtroom and a warrant -clearing center.

"There’s a drug/alcohol recovery component, as well as a job training facility inside," Sean-Waites said.


Sean-Waites says the proposal also includes space for 100 hotel-style short-term emergency rooms to support area hospitals overwhelmed with patients.

"For that reason, this is a lifesaving measure as well," she said.

With early cost estimates of around $100 million, Sean-Waites says she wants the healthcare system to gift the property to the city at no cost.