There isn’t a whole lot of new commercial real estate development taking place anywhere in the country, and the retail sector is no exception.
However, the Atlanta area is proving to be the exception, and John Bemis, Executive Vice President and Retail market lead in Atlanta and the Southeast for JLL shared that the city is seeing new projects going up.
The ironic thing is that this is taking place in a market that has been somewhat slow to recover from the recession compared to other parts of the country. “Atlanta, for the most part, with the exception of a few pockets, was significantly overbuilt, or as I like to say, it was under-demolished in a lot of markets,” Bemis says. “That space is either being repurposed, or it is going to be absorbed, which led for the opportunities for the new ground ups.”
The developments taking place include the Jamestown Properties-developed Ponce City Market, a downtown mixed-use project on the site of a former Sears, Roebuck & Co. that will have 330,000 square feet of retail; Buckhead Atlanta, a mixed-use project in that neighborhood being developed by OliverMcMillan that will include 300,000 square feet of luxury shops; and Avalon, another mixed-use facility that will have 570,000 square feet of retail and be located in suburban Alpharetta.
“They’re serving different markets, and it’s exciting to see things happen in a positive fashion,” Bemis observes.