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Developer Q&A: What’s up with Atlanta’s tallest proposed skyscraper right now?

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No2 Opus Place project leader discusses construction expectations, condo sales, hard rock

Developers expect the shimmering glass edifice, as seen here in a rendering from the north, to finish in two years.
Developers expect the shimmering glass edifice, as seen here from the north, to finish in two years.
Renderings by ArX Solutions, via No2 Opus Place.

For more than four years, questions have persisted about a New York-based developers’ plans for a prominent site in Midtown where a sweeping symphony hall by Spanish starchitect Santiago Calatrava never happened.

Two years ago, the No2 Opus Place concept emerged, promising Atlanta’s tallest residential tower, with 53 stories of elegant glass designed by Perkins+Will. In December, a dynamite-intensive groundbreaking for the project rocked the block.

But six months months later, development wonks of Atlanta are left wondering: When is this thing going to materialize?

How the tower’s abundant glass would frame balcony views.

For answers, we caught up with Roni Avraham, Olympia Heights Management director of developments, who, despite some setbacks and major design tweaks, expects to see residents moving into No2 Opus Place within about two years.

The tower’s configuration was recently altered to create smaller, cheaper options for buyers. Units will now start in the mid-$400,000 range $600,000s (one-bedrooms with around 625 square feet), rather than the previously stated $750,000, and climb north of $12 million for cavernous penthouses. [Note: No2 Opus Place condos, per the development team, now start in the $600,000s].

Developers recently said 20 contracts for condos were inked in March alone.

Curbed Atlanta: First, could you give a broad updated timeline on when you see the tower project finishing and delivering now?

Avraham: Delivery in 2020. Unit delivery starting mid-2020.

Could you sort of paint the picture for the challenges you’ve encountered below ground? I understand subterranean granite is fairly common in Midtown, but is this situation unique?

We don’t think it was unique, and we took common measurements to blast the granite.

What’s happening at the site right now?

14th Street will look significantly different over the next two to three months. If the weather cooperates, Reeves Young [the project’s site work contractor] will be taking the grade of the site down to 14th Street level and, in some areas, will be digging below grade up to 20 feet to excavate the basement level.

In addition, the granite and stone that has been blasted over the last few months will be hauled away to clear the site.

When might Atlantans start to see the tower rise above ground? And how quickly do you anticipate it will climb thereafter?

We expect to start full force around September or October, assuming no delays.

Interiors, designed by Champalimaud, will include finishes described by marketers as “superb.”

You previously expected about 189 condos total, but has that number changed, with the introduction of smaller units?

The number is around 200, since some people decided to combine units.

Any update on sales successes? How many roughly remain available?

Overall we sold close to 25 percent of the units.

I understand it’s probably the least of your concerns now, but what’s the outlook for the other tower, or additional project, adjacent to No.2 Opus Place at the site?

It will be determined by the market. Currently, we are not concentrated on those.

Candidly, what’ll happen with the expensive sales center—$3 million, correct?—when the tower finishes? Could it become, maybe, a tiny home?

It most likely will be taken down. Unless we come up with a better idea!