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Why New Perimeter Towers Should Excite ATL At Large

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Buzz around the Central Perimeter about new office towers in the making could be proof that redevelopment isn't the only means of getting things done in metro Atlanta. The region is in the midst of a five-year, new-office-tower drought not seen since the mid-'90s, but several projects in the pipeline near Interstate 285 could soon change that, the latest being a 26-story office tower in Sandy Springs called Northpark 700, the Atlanta Business Chronicle reports. Last week, developer Hines Interests L.P. received government approval for the tower, one of the tallest planned for Sandy Springs, for a site at Mount Vernon Highway and Abernathy road. That project joins a mixed-use proposal in the area by Hines called 100 Northpark, and the first two "Perimeter Summit" towers by GE Pension Trust, Seven Oaks Co. and CBRE Inc., which are ready to build, the newspapers reports.

The good news for the Perimeter, which is relatively starved for office space, is that no other area of metro Atlanta has more office towers in the pipeline. But each faces a substantial hurdle before ground breaks: "Each project would need significant preleasing from big, creditworthy companies to have any chance of moving forward," the newspaper reports. The bigger picture, however, is that the flurry of tower plans speaks volumes for confidence among Perimeter developers that the market is ripe for business. And the Perimeter has historically been the bellwether for how the rest of Atlanta will fare when clawing out of a recession.

[Above: How the proposed "Perimeter Summit" office towers near Ashford-Dunwoody Road and I-285 could look, eventually. Rendering: GE Pension Trust, Seven Oaks Co. and CBRE Inc. /ABC]

· New office towers enter Perimeter pipeline [Atlanta Business Chronicle]