Friendship Baptist Church has served Vine City on Mitchell Street for the last 130 years.
"Whatever happens, we plan on being in this community," said Lloyd Hawk, the chairman of Friendship's board.
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal and Falcons' owner, Arthur Blank, Thursday announced the city and the team reached an agreement to build a new $1-billion stadium to replace the Georgia Dome.
The team is considering a site around the dome including the neighborhood just south.
Hawk said church leaders do not exactly know where in the community they would end up if the Falcons build the new stadium and they move out the church.
"Right now, we're waiting to get more information from the city and state to see what the impact is from their footprint and what kind of offer they're looking at," Hawk said.
Grady Harris, who lives nearby, said he is concerned about how the proposed stadium would affect his community.
"If it was to help the neighborhood, sure, I would agree, but if it's not, what's the need?" Harris asked.
Reed said the public would pay $200 million.
Supporters have said that money would come from the already existing hotel-motel tax, paid by visitors.
Critics have complained that the team, the Georgia World Congress Center and politicians have excluded the public from any decision making.
"The problem is, that's still public money," said William Perry, who heads the watchdog group Common Cause. "The mayor and city council should hold a public referendum and let voters decide on this."
Reese McCranie, a spokesman for the mayor, disagreed.
"We have included the public at every stage. Just last week we had four public meetings. The public will absolutely continue to be part of the decision making process," McCranie said.
City Council still must review the deal.
Copyright 2013 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Monday, May 20 2013 7:58 AM EDT2013-05-20 11:58:26 GMT
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Monday, May 20 2013 4:28 PM EDT2013-05-20 20:28:43 GMT
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