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Doraville inks deal to replace dying strip mall with affordable housing development

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Officials: $50-million project is moving forward on the site of a Peachtree Industrial Boulevard shopping plaza

A rendering of a shopping center with a couple of low buildings and cars in the foreground.
The planned mixed-use replacement for an ailing shopping center.
Kaufman Capital Partners; courtesy City of Doraville

The ongoing push by cities along Atlanta’s northern perimeter to retain affordability amid a flurry of development has gotten a boost in Doraville.

Doraville city officials announced this week that Atlanta developer Kaufman Capital Partners is moving forward with a $50-million, mixed-use development that will replace a moribund shopping center from the 1980s once known as Friday’s Plaza.

The 14-acre strip mall—overlooking Peachtree Industrial Boulevard at Tilly Mill Road, just north of Interstate 285—is mostly vacant now.

More than two-thirds of it is expected to be demolished for Kaufman Capital’s development, which will be known as The Village at Tilly Mill Crossing, said Doraville spokesman Doug Carroll.

Officials say the venture will bring a new stock of affordable apartments—more than 300 of them—that Doraville needs. Expect two residential buildings, from three to five stories, plus a retail component.

A photo of a dead shopping center with many vacancies.
The shopping center, which is visible from busy PIB, as seen in 2018.
Google Maps

Doraville leaders have agreed to about $19 million in property tax abatements to help offset Kaufman Capital’s redevelopment costs.

To allow for possible delays related to the novel coronavirus pandemic, the project’s deadline for delivery has been pushed back to March 2023, officials said.

Landmarks in the immediate area include Hightower Elementary School, a Home Depot, and Oasis Goodtime Emporium, which is embroiled in legal disputes with the city.

Kaufman Capital is partnering in the redevelopment with Atlantic Realty Partners, a firm with recent high-profile projects around the city that include Midtown’s Azure on the Park and Buckhead’s Cyan on Peachtree.

UPDATE: April 9, 1:22 p.m. Doraville media relations officials had identified this project as both needed and “affordable” in communications this week. Andy Yeoman, Doraville City Councilmember, District 1, sends this clarification: “There is no HUD tax credits on this property, and the City of Doraville does not have an affordable housing policy. I’ve already had emails from constituents... asking why we allowed Section 8 and a low-income housing project in our city based off of this article. It is the furthest from the truth.”