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Colony Square lands tenant to take entire ground-up office building

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Law firm’s expected move of 250 jobs is latest happening at iconic property’s overhaul

A fresh perspective on the Colony Square office building, now with signage.
A fresh perspective on the building, now with signage.
Beyer Blinder Belle/Lord Aeck Sargent rendering courtesy of North American Properties

A global law firm with deep Atlanta roots will lay claim to a sizable piece of Midtown’s reimagined Colony Square, officials announced today.

Developer North American Properties has inked a deal with Jones Day to lease the entirety of the six-story Building 500, with the exception of some ground-floor retail space.

The 135,600-square-foot building is planned for the corner of 15th and Peachtree streets, bordering a small park with outdoor seating. (Plans that call for privatizing the park space for Colony Square’s use have irked some neighbors.)

The law firm will take all but 20,000 square feet—or the entirety of the building’s office component—with a Jones Day lobby in the first floor, alongside future retail. It’s the first building in Atlanta’s current spec office pipeline to be fully leased before breaking ground, NAP officials noted.

Site work on Building 500 is expected to commence this summer, followed by vertical construction in March and planned completion in summer 2021. Jones Day is expected to bring 250 lawyers and staff to Colony Square.

The firm’s current offices (and building-top signage) are at nearby Pershing Park Plaza, about three blocks north on Peachtree Street. That building was completed in 1999, per Midtown Alliance.

Jones Day, which traces its Atlanta history to the late 1800s, counts more than 2,500 lawyers across 43 offices on five continents.

The firm’s modernized workplace at Colony Square will include a large terrace overlooking Peachtree Street and a “more efficient floorplan than offices of the past,” reads an NAP press release. Aldo LaFiandra, the Jones Day Atlanta office’s partner-in-charge, called proximity to Piedmont Park, public transit, and the project’s mixed-use offerings significant factors in the relocation.

The reimagined Colony Square, an Atlanta mixed-use forefather that’s five decades old, will count about 3,250 daytime workers upon completion, including employees at Whole Foods Market’s regional headquarters.

The planned uses for Colony Square’s formerly covered food court area include Building 300, at left, to be anchored by Whole Foods offices.
The planned uses for Colony Square’s formerly covered food court area include Building 300, at left, to be anchored by Whole Foods offices.
North American Properties

Whole Foods signed on to anchor the 87,500-square-foot Building 300 earlier this year.

Beyond a fresh slate of restaurants and the new, shady Grove component, Colony Square is expected to open two anchors—luxury movie theater IPIC and the Main & Main food hall—next May.

The Grove, upon opening last month.
Courtesy of NAP

Jones Day isn’t the only law firm making waves in Midtown lately.

At Selig Enterprises’s under-construction 1105 West Peachtree project, prominent Atlanta law firm Smith, Gambrell & Russell has inked a lease for four floors—more than 100,000 square feet—in the office tower component.

Meanwhile, the King & Spalding firm earlier this year installed highly visible signage, powered by 1,067 LED lights, atop one of Midtown’s most distinctive skyscrapers, 1180 Peachtree.