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Buckhead’s last affordable living holdout will be converted to ‘affordable luxury’ condos

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Residents were booted from the Darlington apartments last fall

a picture of the darlington
The 1950s Darlington building.

Last fall, people living in what many considered Buckhead’s only affordable apartment complex were removed as developers planned a multi-million-dollar renovation of the aging complex.

The Darlington, a circa-1950s cruciform apartment stack with more than 600 units, was falling apart and, occasionally, played host to multiple alleged violent crimes.

Then again, it was likely the only place in the posh neighborhood where renters could claim an apartment for less than $800 a month. Zillow and list almost no ITP options for that price range north of Midtown now.

The days of cheap Darlington rents appear to be over. At least on a large scale.

Vardan Capital Partners, which bought the aging complex for $30 million in 2017, now plans to convert the Darlington into a condo tower with “affordable luxury” units.

The 276 condos would range in price from $300,000 to $500,000, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The renovation and conversion is expected to cost some $40 million.

An earlier proposal called for a restoration of the 612 apartments, some of which would have been earmarked for people earning 65 percent of the area median income.

But Vardan backed away from that plan because the federal government wanted units set aside for people making even less than that—50 percent of the area median income—according to the paper.

Still, Vardan owner Trace McCreary said creating mixed-income units of some sort is not yet off the table.

Should Vardan’s plans pan out, the project would be the largest apartment-to-condo conversion in Atlanta’s current cycle.

Other intown conversions are underway or have recently delivered in Old Fourth Ward, Atlantic Station, and elsewhere in Buckhead.