Celebrate with Riverdale as it opens new Downtown

While some believe Riverdale’s best days are behind it, others can see a promising future, thanks to the city’s new Town Center.

Almost three years in the making, Riverdale’s new “Downtown” has finally come to fruition and will celebrate its grand opening beginning this Saturday, Oct. 9, at 11 am (7210 Church St.).

Visualized by Riverdale’s Livable Centers Initiative (LCI) in January 2008, the plan included building a new 21,000-square-foot City Hall Complex, a 42,000-square-foot Center for the Arts, Business and Leisure Services, a public plaza with an interactive water feature and a 1,000-seat amphitheater.

LCI is still searching for a private developer to implement the second and third phases of the project, which will include a hotel, retail shops, restaurants and residential units.

The grand opening starts with a ribbon cutting ceremony, followed by multi-cultural performances and tours of the business expo and complex. For the night owls, a celebratory concert will take place at 8 p.m. at Riverdale’s new amphitheater, featuring performances by Bobby Brown, Miki Howard and the 911 Band. Vendors selling a wide variety of food and merchandise will be on site all day as well, and will conclude with a fireworks show.

The fun continues on Oct. 16 at 11 a.m. as Riverdale celebrates its Community Day, which will include children’s activities and various vendors selling their wares, and concludes with a live amphitheater performance by recording artists The Zapp Band and Shirley Murdock.

FYI – all amphitheater events are FREE but limited seating is available, so bring your lawn chair. But no coolers or carry-ins will be permitted.

Will you come out to support Riverdale’s grand opening? Do you see the new Town Center as a positive for Riverdale and Clayton county overall? What restaurants and/or businesses would you like to see come to the area?

24 comments Add your comment

Tell The Truth

October 5th, 2010
4:00 pm

If I’m not stuck out of town, I may drop by. It’s great to see some vision for Riverdale from it’s leadership. This is a major first step in the right direction. If they can get the alcohol restrictions lifted, I’d like to see any number of restaurant chains in the city. As far as other businesses, I really don’t know what else Riverdale needs.


October 5th, 2010
9:02 pm

Sounds nice. I wish them well even though I have moved out of state.


October 5th, 2010
9:05 pm

This is a very good thing for Riverdale and the county. In fact, the county need many more face lifts. This event will have great music though.


October 6th, 2010
9:12 am

I moved to Riverdale a few years ago and despite some tough times that area has encountered I am proud to call Mayor Dixon MY MAYOR! She represents the citizens of Riverdale quite well with a touch of “southern charm” and intelligence. I hope she continues with her vision to revitalize Riverdale and bring in some restaurants were families can sit and dine with a greater menu selection that incldes “healthier” food choices. However, I recognize that everything comes in due time. I am not looking to up and relocate and I will continue to support the Mayor and vote her!

Progressive African American

October 6th, 2010
10:02 am

At last – I moved to Riverdale in 2006 and while looking for homes in other Metro Areas, I simply couldn’t believe that more people wouldn’t be buying in Riverdale due to being so close to the airport (NO AIR TRAFFIC NOISE) and so close to all major connectors. Areas like this have all gone through gentrification/facelifts/upgrading in a majority of other states and prgogressive cities. Four years later, a remodeled Wal-Mart, Home Depot, Dunkin Donuts, Loewes, Kroger, Publix, and now a new Town Center with more businesses coming in soon, makes it all worth the bad times that have affected Riverdale. There will still be bad times, but I am thankful for the leadership of not only our Mayor, but also that of our City Planner Ms. Iris Jessie. All we need to do now is get rid of Wayne Hall – has voted against progression his entire time on the board.

Tommy Paden

October 6th, 2010
11:04 am

Ha, Ha, Ha, you people are a joke. Iris Jessie is a THIEF. Riverdale is broke, if they are ever audited all of them will go to jail except Wayne Hall. Jessie is the city manager not a planner. It is amazing how ill informed you people are


October 6th, 2010
11:12 am

Great Job Riverdale!!! Congratulations and just keep it moving forward…

William Long

October 6th, 2010
2:37 pm

I’m proud of the work the Riverdale city administrators has done. It takes vision and fortitude for a city to move forward. Riverdale is a good place to live; but don’t get this wrong, there are some people who don’t deserve to live here. For the most part our streets are safe and clean. As for Wayne Hall…………….there’s a bad apple in every barrel.


October 6th, 2010
4:50 pm

Having lived here in Clayton County my entire life, I am stubbornly hanging on to hope for every city in this county. This new Town Center is a great thing for Riverdale and the county! Riverdale has truly scrabbled upward toward being a more safe and welcoming place for families and while I don’t live within the city, I find myself there often for shopping and such. My only complaint is the congestion along Hwy 85 from 138 north to about Gardenwalk, but not sure exactly what can be done about that. My child IS in a Riverdale school and have had a very positive experience there. I’ve seen several posters mention the restriction on restaurant liquor sales….Can anyone say what that’s about, I’m just curious. Since I live in Jonesboro, I must go to Riverdale to find a liquor store, but they don’t allow restaurant sales?

Just Thinking

October 6th, 2010
10:29 pm

Bobby Brown such a great role model for Riverdale.


October 6th, 2010
11:00 pm

Just Thinking, you’re silly! The crowd drawn to a Bobby Brown – Zapp Band concert don’t need a role model! Those are “Grown Folk”, much like Bush was a role model for Americans!


October 7th, 2010
9:16 am

We saw the city of Decatur move forward through developing its “town square” and using it to host festivals and other events. It certainly would be nice if the same happened in Riverdale.


October 7th, 2010
4:19 pm

Will they be handing out bullet proof vest to attend?


October 7th, 2010
4:43 pm

Kimberly – think we can next talk about the local races that will affect us all. The races for election in November. Thanks for heading this forum.

James Brown

October 7th, 2010
8:19 pm

BlackRain –> Great suggestion. I’m a newcomer to politics… having never run for office. However, I am amazed at how unengaged Clayton citizens are about my race for legislature, who I am, and (more importantly) what I stand for.

Hopefully your suggestion to Kimberly will be taken to heart so we can have dialog before the election that is less than 26 days away!

James Brown


October 7th, 2010
8:30 pm

Yes there will be a blog about the local elections, probably the week after next.

Secret Agent Man

October 7th, 2010
9:17 pm

Bobby Brown? Will he bring a Ck Pipe and Whitney? LOL!


October 7th, 2010
10:28 pm

BlackRain, You and the pluocrats think Clayton has dumbed down to the point where rude and crude political campaigns are the norm. Now, losers run, run, run and run as because money and power is all they know and you along with them are still trying to wallow in the taxpayers trough. Shameless.

Black Rain

October 7th, 2010
10:57 pm

With only two weeks before the election – guess the local voters attention span is just about that much time. Too bad, has anyone checked out Sandra Scott’s paperwork for the elections – turned in 3 months too late? She probably let her supposed campaign manager and mental powerhouse Noreese Haynes fill out the forms. People – please wake up – with this person in the state capitol, our schools and BOE will be in the crosshairs.

Black Rain

October 7th, 2010
11:10 pm

For Riverdale – it seems when the corrupt former political gang and mayor was replaced and Mayor Winn-Dixon came in, Riverdale started its turnaround. See Clayton – it can be done.

plurocrat(spelled correctly)

October 8th, 2010
9:25 am


Welcome back G Dowell!


October 8th, 2010
12:48 pm

Poll(jughead)jammers ?????????????????


October 8th, 2010
12:54 pm

Mr DoWell – how things going?

If Black Rain is right about Sandra Scott and Noreese Haynes, IT looks like maybe Trotter has set his sights on the state capitol now, you know, NH use to couldn’t wipe his — ‘er nose without JT. If she filed late -shouldn’t there be a fine or some conequence.

Hell to the nah!

October 9th, 2010
6:59 pm

New downtown is really nice! hope they can keep it that way!