A veteran Atlanta developer behind projects such as the 3344 Peachtree tower in Buckhead, among the city's tallest buildings, is bullish — if not downright effervescent — about the ATL's prospect for continued urban revitalization. The Atlanta Business Chronicle conducted an insightful Q&A with David Allman, head of Regent Partners LLC, who's helped transform the skylines of Southeastern cities for decades. Asked if we're entering a "golden age" of urban renewal, Allman basically replied: Been there, doing that! The actual quote: "Notice where virtually all the office development has occurred over the past 10 years," said Allman, the next chair of the nonprofit development group Urban Land Institute-Atlanta. "I see it as a continuation, a possible intensification, of a trend well in progress."
Allman believes current investments in urban Atlanta are different from other cycles of same. Why? "What stands out this cycle is the amount of intown residential — particularly multifamily — that is being developed," he told the newspaper. "The millennials have spoken with a megaphone, and they prefer urban!"
Regarding the Atlanta Streetcar's initial leg, Allman called it a "primarily a tourist route" and predicted that, as funded, it will spur only modest development. The Beltline, conversely, "will be — and perhaps already is — a major catalyst of development, particularly multifamily residential," he told the newspaper.
City data would appear to support Allman's zeal.
Earlier this year, a report from the city's Bureau of Planning illustrated the obvious — that construction activity along the Atlanta Beltline corridor is booming, most notably in the vicinity of Freedom Parkway. The teeming backhoes and bulldozers are a stark contrast to Recession-besieged 2010, when just three projects were under way along the 22-mile corridor. Last year, 14 projects of varying scopes were under construction — for a total of 1,485 new townhomes and apartments.
· ULI-Atlanta chairman: "Beltline will be a major catalyst" [Atlanta Business Chronicle]
· Beltline Altering Life For Businesses, But Could It Use More? [Curbed Atlanta]
· All recent Curbed Beltline coverage