In the works since 2016, efforts to redevelop an arrow-shaped collection of buildings into a new commercial hub for historic Cascade Heights are making progress.
Where Cascade Road meets Benjamin E. Mays Drive, about six miles southwest of downtown, an all-day celebration planned Saturday at The Point at Cascade will mark the official openings of Buzz Coffee and Winehouse and newly renovated Barlow’s Barber Shop.
According to the project’s owner and developer, Shea Embry, the barbershop is the area’s longest-running black-owned business, while Buzz is the newest.
A community staple for generations, Barlow’s “has the look and feel of the first day it was opened decades ago,” while the coffee and winehouse, fashioned with a sleek minimalist design, is the longtime dream of owner Tre Perry, a banking industry vet, said Embry.
The Point first made waves about three years ago, promising to reinvigorate a highly visibly, triangular parcel amid the commercial nucleus of Cascade Heights. About a dozen retail slots are planned.
Redevelopment hit the brakes as Embry pursued a historic designation for the area. Late last year, those efforts resulted in the formation of Cascade Heights Commercial Historic District, a multi-block zone comprised of commercial structures, office buildings, gas stations, civic buildings, churches, and multifamily residential.
For now, The Point at Cascade is also home to Cameron’s Salon, Sound Resort Studios, and the community-focused Atlanta City Studio, formerly a Ponce City Market tenant.
An optometrist will take City Studio’s temporary space in July, and future tenants will include an artisanal market, small retail shops, and restaurants, Embry said.
“I held off marketing for restaurants until Buzz opened,” Embry told Curbed Atlanta, via email. “I just hired a Realtor to lease the rest of the spaces.”
Other recent additions include lively ELEVATE murals across building facades.
The Cascade hub joined seven other places and structures—including Atlanta’s Central Library and M.C. Kiser Company Building downtown, the English Avenue School, and the East Atlanta neighborhood—added to the Georgia Register of Historic Places in October.
Cascade Heights traces its history back to the 1920s and prominent Atlanta landscape architect William L. Monroe Sr. It’s home to Atlanta movers-and-shakers such as former Mayor Shirley Franklin and former U.N. Ambassador Andrew Young.
The Georgia National Register Review Board noted how the newly minted historic district has been Cascade Heights’s spiritual, social, and commercial center since the 1930s.
Redevelopment efforts at The Point are meant to ensure that doesn’t change.