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Renderings: How a mixed-use destination could sprout in historic Sweet Auburn

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The Front Porch at Auburn Avenue is being called “Atlanta’s premier equity-project”

A rendering shows geometric construction featuring lots of metal, brick, and glass.
How residences could look at The Front Porch.
Renderings: Hart-Lyman

A significant piece of historic Sweet Auburn’s aging retail corridor is poised for an update that promises a mix of new retail and residential offerings—and possibly new ridership for the Atlanta Streetcar.

According to officials with New York-based developer Hart-Lyman, the piece of Auburn Avenue nestled between Hilliard and Jackson streets is expected to be redeveloped in a way that maintains some of the neighborhood’s historic character

Dubbed “The Front Porch at Auburn Avenue,” the proposal would comprise 38,000 square feet of retail space, 13,000 square feet of apartments, and 18,600 square feet of for-sale residential offerings.

Hart-Lyman and Franklin Street are managing the leasing efforts for the retail component, and Syntony Design and Cole Hil are heading up architecture work.

Officials are billing the endeavor, an effort by the Historic District Development Corporation with help from the Partnership for Southern Equity, as “Atlanta’s premier equity-project,” according to project literature shared with Curbed Atlanta.

A rendering shows new construction extending above the existing commercial space.
The former Haugabrooks Funeral Home and existing retail spaces will remain in the redevelopment, per initial plans.

Exactly what that means isn’t crystal clear, but Hart-Lyman managing director KB Yabuku forwarded the following statement from an HDDC official:

“The Front Porch will infuse key elements of environmentally and economically sustainable infrastructure, urban agriculture, and commerce into the neighborhood economy,” the official wrote. “The project is being codeveloped with neighborhood residents to elevate the goals and indicators of success for the systemically disenfranchised community.”

Another rendering shows a three-story building with a green-filled seating area on the roof.
Expect density and rooftop amenities, developers say.

Yabuku said it’s too soon to discuss the development timeline and future pricing for the retail and residential space, but he said it’s possible some existing Auburn Avenue businesses could be incorporated into the mix.

“There are no buildings being demolished,” Yabuku stressed, nodding to the standing commercial strip and the historic Haugabrooks Funeral Home building.

Per the HDDC official: “The Front Porch will also include community gathering space, placekeeping arts-focused influences, and, overall, will be a destination that welcomes everyone to the return of Sweet Auburn.”

A bird’s-eye view of the proposed development.
How the development would fit onto the block, with Auburn Avenue at bottom right.
A streetcar track runs in front of an old funeral home and commercial spaces.
The corridor today.
Google Maps
The streetcar track runs in front of a fish restaurant and empty lots.
Looking west, toward downtown.
Google Maps