Hines Interests Limited Partnership and Morgan Stanley have announced plans to renovate the mixed-use village Atlantic Station.
As the owners of the mixed-use property, the two companies have decided to add a couple of new features that include additional buildings, more retailers, better restaurants, and much more.
“Hines is building two state-of-the-art office buildings that will continue to attract a young educated workforce,” explained Devon Barnwell, executive director at Morgan Stanley.
Demolition has already begun on a couple of buildings that were once used for retail and restaurant space. However, the renovations are not expected to be completed until fall 2019.
For the site’s renovation, Hines and Morgan Stanley have enlisted the architectural firm HGOR to create the design. Within Atlanta, the firm has designed The Battery at Suntrust Park, 3630 Peachtree, and many other projects.
The main focal point of the renovation is the small park that exists in the middle of Atlantic Station’s retail center. The plan is to expand the lawn area, doubling it in size. The area will become a major green space, referred to as the neighborhood’s Central Park. There will also be a new video screen for outdoor movie events.
Already a popular feature, groups of people frequently gather on the site; sometimes for planned events like movie showings.
Additionally, H&M will continue its expansion, while Atlantic Station welcomes Forever 21 and HOBNOB Southern Tavern. There will also be a new valet and rideshare pickup point.
Another project includes the AMLI Residential building of a 300-unit apartment tower. In addition to the multi-family building and more for-rent housing, three new hotels will also be introduced to the property.
Over a decade ago, Atlantic Station went from an unwanted brownfield to a staple in Atlanta. Now functioning as a part of Midtown Atlanta, it encompasses a retail district, office space, condominiums, townhomes, and apartment buildings.
During the site’s Demolition Day ceremony, Barnwell recalled some of the histories behind Atlantic Station.
“At the turn of the century, when the Atlanta Women’s Club was first organized, the Atlanta Hoop Company began operations here, “she says. “On this 138 acres, with 128 employees, the company later became the Atlanta Steel Mill with over 2,000 employees in the 1950s and continued to operate into the 1970s, eventually shutting down due to the competition.”
“After sitting abandoned as a brownfield for many years—an eyesore in the city—developer Jim Jacoby began envisioning the Atlantic Station project,” she added. “However, he faced significant obstacles such as contamination and the lack of connectivity across the interstate. Jacoby’s bold vision began to come together through coordination with the EPA, who also recognized the smart growth aspect of redevelopment.”
After officially opening in 2005, Atlantic Station was bought by partners Morgan Stanley and Hines in 2015.
According to City of Atlanta Planning Commissioner Tim Keane, Atlantic Station has grown to become the city’s fourth most visited tourist attraction.
However, the renovations couldn’t have come at a better time with The Battery at Suntrust Park being compared as a bigger and better version. Also, redevelopment is taking place Downtown and all along West Midtown.
In a city that now boasts the newish Mercedes Benz Stadium and recently upgraded State Farm Arena, it seems the renovations at Atlantic Station will be both a part of the norm and also a welcome addition to the current attractions in its place.
Additionally, with plans underway to radically overhaul the look and feel of the area currently known as The Gulch, the largely cosmetic additions to Atlanta Station will probably be eclipsed by the sheer magnitude regarding The Gulch as to what has only been discussed in theory.