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State Farm's Proposal could beat the 'Sub-' Out of Suburban

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If Paul Revere were to hop a MARTA train from Midtown toward North Springs, you might hear his cry of "Urbanization is coming, urbanization is coming," as the train doors slid open at Dunwoody Station. The Atlanta Business Chronicle reports that what originally was supposed to be a single high-rise office building for State Farm has morphed into a major development, set to bring density to Dunwoody near Perimeter Mall. A new rendering has emerged showing three additional 20-ish-story buildings added to the mix, surrounding a new park situated along Hammond Drive, across the street from the recently proposed mega-development known as High Street. And this case of taking the sub- out of suburban isn't an anomaly. It seems to be the hot trend in the northern suburbs.

Even as many companies focus on relocating operations into the heart of the city, other nationally — and even internationally — prominent companies are electing to move to the suburbs. However, where Mercedes-Benz's North American operations will be snuggled among low and medium-density housing in Sandy Springs, State Farm is making a case for moving the city to suburbia, with density and walkability as driving forces in the design. In addition to the four office towers, there could be upwards of 90,000 square feet of retail space in the podium of the development, fronting the park space and Hammond Drive.

Recently, a litany of projects have been announced or proposed for the area including GID's "High Street," Abernathy 400 and Northpark 100. Growth around the north-end Perimeter has been greatly influenced by the MARTA red line which services the area; even the mayor tipped his hat to MARTA for its role in attracting companies.

With a proposed MARTA extension that would stretch rail service almost to Forsyth County, the trend seems destined to continue. While it could take the rest of the decade to realize the full State Farm project, look for more major projects to transform the north-end Perimeter into a denser version of Dunwoody.

· How State Farm will remake 'outdated' suburbs [Atlanta Business Chronicle]
· Is North End Perimeter Ripe for Skyscraper Boom? [Curbed Atlanta]
· Is the North-End Perimeter Becoming Buckhead Part 2? [Curbed Atlanta]
· Abernathy 400 Proves Perimeter Is Cuckoo for Office Space [Curbed Atlanta]
· Holy Skyscraper! It's the Tallest Suburban Tower in the Country [Curbed Atlanta]

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