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Kirkwood church demolished to make way for 60 more townhomes, priced from $300Ks

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Expect more than 60 townhouses on the swiftly changing Memorial Drive corridor

A church is shown with blue sky and clouds above, and a green lawn in the front, with parking at right.
The now-demolished sanctuary and its grounds along Memorial Drive.
Google Maps

The razing of a large Kirkwood church in recent weeks signals that a flurry of townhome construction along Memorial Drive from Cabbagetown to East Lake is continuing.

Numerous townhome builds are underway east of Moreland Avenue, in Edgewood, Kirkwood, East Lake, and the Parkview community just south of Memorial.

The largest new venture to move forward is by a builder familiar with the area, Empire Communities (formerly EA Homes), a company that’s shifted focus in recent years from strictly suburban development to urban infill projects across town.

Empire bought two parcels along Memorial that included a large vacant piece of land and 2012 Memorial Drive, the former home of Shy Temple CME Church.

The congregation has relocated to a facility on Wesley Chapel Road in Decatur, Saba Loghman, Empire’s director of acquisitions, tells Curbed Atlanta.

An aerial view of houses and a large church with a red roof, with roads on the front and side.
The former church property with Bixby Terrace linking in behind it, and a separate large townhome project across Memorial, at bottom right.
Google Maps

In place of the church will be 66 townhomes priced from the mid-$300,000s, with sales expected to begin early next year.

Renderings and square footage estimates aren’t yet available, but Loghman said each unit with have two bedrooms.

The broader goal, Loghman said, is to provide “attainable new housing construction” with an intown location—this one being three blocks from Kirkwood’s commercial village.

“Kirkwood is a special neighborhood with a strong sense of place and community-based businesses,” Loghman wrote in an email. “Smart growth and density needs to continue and happen along the corridors in Atlanta to accommodate for our population growth.”

The Empire site is directly across the recently re-striped corridor from another large townhome venture, Cablik Enterprises’s The Moderns, in the Parkview neighborhood.

That project, designed by TSW, is expected to eventually produce 62 residences, with a portion reserved as workforce housing. Current listings fall in the high $400,000s.

Elsewhere along Memorial Drive, Empire is barreling ahead with the townhome venture Bixton in East Lake, in the shadow of Drew Charter School.

Other EA/Empire projects include a 34-townhome build that’s underway in Old Fourth Ward, with prices expected in the $400,000s, and the 120-unit The Swift where Boulevard Heights meets Grant Park and the Beltline’s future Southside Trail.