[The Atlantic Residences building in Atlantic Station (center), in between the Twelve Hotel and Residences and an office building, image via atlantacityhomes.com.]
We assume holiday festivities may have precluded many of you from noticing when word came last week that The Atlantic made 40 of its units available for lease. Though condominium inventories in Atlanta have thinned-out over the past couple of years (largely through the sales of distressed inventory), the sheer volume of development in the Midtown sub-market during the boom has left some buildings still remarkably vacant. Among the emptiest is The Atlantic in Atlantic Station, which is a shame, because it's perhaps Atlanta's most attractive residential skyscraper, with art deco architecture, high-end interiors and amazing views from its 40 stories. The size of the building (some 400 units, 85% of which are empty) is the primary challenge; a vicious cycle of lenders unwilling to make condominium loans without minimum occupancy requirements being met keeps new buyers from moving into the building and getting the project past the threshold. The conversion of units to apartments will not help the mortgage situation for potential buyers. But it will no doubt generate some cash flow for ST Residential, who got The Atlantic as part of their purchase of the Corus Bank's assets after it failed in spectacular fashion back in the fall of 2009.