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In Midtown, is second NCR tower already in works?

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Rumors that “Silicon Valley of the East” is expanding could be merited

Midtown’s Fortune 500 "icon" could soon have company.

Word on the street is that financial technology colossus NCR is planning to build a second tower — just months after an initial phase broke ground — for a new campus near Georgia Tech that leaders have called a future "Silicon Valley of the East" in Midtown.

An anonymous tipster sent the following to Curbed Atlanta this week, which they allege is part of a memo circulated internally at NCR:

"I am excited to share that we have expanded the scope of our global headquarters campus project in Midtown Atlanta to include a second tower. This allows us the space needed to collocate employees in our Alpharetta, Atlanta and Duluth offices, build for future growth, eliminate the need for a second northern Atlanta suburbs campus, and most importantly—build an innovative and collaborative headquarters that will inspire and excite you about coming to work every day!"

"We expect to move into the first tower by Q1 2018, and the second tower will open in Q1 2019."

There’s no mention of this supposed second tower’s size, but according to the tipster, updated renderings of the new campus will be available in September. Nothing is on file yet with the Midtown Alliance.

NCR and developer Cousins Properties aren’t talking, but the rumors could have merit.

In a story this week, the AJC cites sources familiar with the matter as saying a second office tower is in the works, next to the glassy, roughly 22-story counterpart that will overlook The Connector. According the newspaper, Cousins Properties officials said in a recent earnings call that the NCR project’s second phase is "about to start."

NCR, a technology company focused on "consumer transactions" (meaning it makes ATMs, cash registers, and the like), is currently based in Duluth. With the first phase, the company plans to move about 3,600 employees into 533,000 square feet of office space.

In addition to having gyms and facilities for employees, NCR plans to activate the street level with an "urban living room" that invites pedestrian activity. Also, expect a plaza complete with bocce court, oversized chess boards, and "decorative" ping-pong tables.

Last summer, the head of Cousins Properties whipped Atlanta development watchers into a speculation frenzy by promising that NCR’s "trophy" headquarters would be "an iconic addition to the Midtown skyline." A week later, initial renderings emerged, and the proverbial needle scratched right off the record. More nuanced renderings later pacified the duped and angry masses, for the most part.