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Land Use and Development

Residential Developments May Be in Pipeline for Ingles Shopping Center

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Rendering of option “D” for the Ingles Shopping Center. It’s one of several options in the forthcoming 2045 Comprehensive Plan

City Councilman Alex Wright talks about developers wants versus residents needs and preferences.

NOTE: This article has been updated on July 27, 2023, at 4:36 pm.

Economic development doesn’t seem to take a holiday in Peachtree Corners. While many are enjoying the lazy days of summer, deals are in the works to upgrade some areas that have remained stagnant and refresh others into more modern spaces.

City Councilman Alex Wright recently shed light on a few changes in the works.

Land behind Chase has a buyer

The three acres of undeveloped land behind the Chase Bank on Highway 141 is owned by a man named Charlie Roberts, who at one time owned all of what is now the Town Center, according to Wright in the newsletter he distributes occasionally.

Roberts had planned to sell the land to North American Properties (NAP) last fall as part of its ‘Downtown Peachtree Corners’ project with The Forum redevelopment as its crown jewel.

However, due to increased lending costs, NAP did not have the funds to purchase the land, added Wright.

With the assumption that NAP was purchasing the property, City Council approved rezoning the parcels for apartments. And even though that deal didn’t come to fruition, the new zoning designation remains in place.

“The property was rezoned on August 23, 2022,” said Peachtree Corners Communications Director Louis E. Svehla. “The city does not dictate ownership, so any new builder can proceed with construction in accordance with the ordinance conditions of 2022. However, any substantive change from the ordinance conditions would require a change that goes before the City Council at a hearing.”

This isn’t the first time Roberts tried to sell that property to developers who wanted to build apartments.

“About a decade ago, the land bordered by Highway 141, Peachtree Corners Circle and Medlock Bridge Road was just woods,” said Wright. “Mr. Roberts owned the vast majority of it. …He sold that to a company who builds apartments and houses. This was right after the city was formed and the property had been zoned for apartments.”

The city didn’t want apartments there and ended up purchasing the property that is now Town Center. Back in 2016, Roberts made a deal with the city that another developer would build apartments and a hotel, so the city granted a zoning ordinance for apartments that expired after four years.

“He had to have stuff coming out of the ground within four years,” Wright explained. “COVID came and that deal fell through because hotels were not doing so great.”

With the four years expired, the zoning reverted back to its original zoning which was commercial. “There wasn’t a lot of demand for commercial development at the time, also because of COVID. So, he just sits on it and then several years passed,” Wright continued.

NAP enters the picture

When North American Properties came along with a vision to turn the Town Center complex and The Forum into Downtown Peachtree Corners, city officials bought into the idea of more foot traffic and more people living on site. Now Roberts had a buyer for his “white elephant.”

“Shortly thereafter, the Federal Reserve started to raise interest rates fairly aggressively to try to tame inflation,” said Wright. “That made borrowing more expensive; that was the case for North American Properties.”

Although he didn’t hear this directly from NAP management, Wright said he believes that was the case. He added that NAP probably paid more for The Forum than it had originally budgeted since it was such a desirable project.

Again, Roberts has property he wants to sell. But this time, he doesn’t have to go through the process of getting it rezoned. 

“With several apartment projects locally stalling due to increased borrowing costs and data pointing to the apartments nationwide being overbuilt, I have been curious to see if and when Mr. Roberts would be able to unload this property,” Wright wrote in his newsletter.

“It appears that he now has a buyer — Terwilliger Pappas,” Wright added. “Speculation is that any project would be branded under Solis with a closing date estimated for end of [July].”

Possible changes at Jones Bridge Square

A few months ago, at a City Council work session, the city manager said the owner of Jones Bridge Square shopping center approached him about a redesign for the property, according to Wright.
The owner said Ingles Market said it may be open to working with him regarding to redevelopment, even if it meant the store had a smaller footprint, Wright added.

“I’m paraphrasing, but they basically like what’s going on at the Town Center and want to be a part of that,” said Wright. “Instead of just being a shopping center with all this space that’s unused, they want to put in some things that bring a kind of synergy, if you will, with what’s already there.”

Wright explained further that with the pedestrian bridge, there’s a growing desire to be nearer to where things are happening. Comparing what’s going on at The Forum to many European cities, Wright said that it’s human nature to seek a gathering spot and build things around it.

The current Medlock Bridge Corridor map in the 2045 Comprehensive Plan Update. This has not been voted on by City Council as of this publication. Note the “Charlie Roberts” property circled in red (4)
The current Medlock Bridge Corridor map in the 2045 Comprehensive Plan Update. This has not been voted on by City Council as of this publication. Note the “Charlie Roberts” property circled in red (4)

Opportunity for senior living option

“I don’t know much about the grocery store business, but from what [City Manager] Brian Johnson was telling us, they’ve got about twice as much space as they’d like. Apparently, the thing in grocery stores now is smaller,” said Wright. “This might be an opportunity to redesign the whole place.”

There has been some interest in a housing component. Although Wright hasn’t polled his fellow city councilmembers, he believes it could be approved for residential zoning.

“It would be a mixed-use development, and lately we’ve approved all these apartment developments, so we might not need more for a while,” said Wright.

Johnson showed several different concepts that he thought the landowners might be interested in. One idea that caught Wright’s attention was senior living. 

“I know we’ve got Waterside, but it’s very expensive to get in there. And the other thing about Waterside is you can’t really walk anywhere from there except these trails along the river,” he said.

Senior housing as part of a mixed-use development, with amenities like a grocery store, restaurants, a pharmacy, etc., could fill a current void, said Wright.

“All the new developments like retail right up on the road versus a big parking lot in the front. That’s the trend right now,” said Wright. “Then, behind that would be some parking and also a large senior component.”

Still in concept phase

Will there be a new senior housing development on Peachtree Parkway? Will the Ingles Market take on a smaller footprint? None of these concepts have gotten past the conversation stage, said Wright, but he’s excited about what could come for Peachtree Corners.

“These decisions don’t come lightly. These plans tell developers we’re interested in more housing, more dense housing, more affordable housing,” said Wright. “But many of them are presenting rental housing, and from the public input, we hear a desire for a more balanced and also diverse housing stock with ownership options.”

NOTE: This article has been updated on July 27, 2023, at 4:36 pm.

Arlinda Smith Broady is part of the Boomerang Generation of Blacks that moved back to the South after their ancestors moved North. With approximately three decades of journalism experience (she doesn't look it), she's worked in tiny, minority-based newsrooms to major metropolitans. At every endeavor she brings professionalism, passion, pluck, and the desire to spread the news to the people.

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Community

Peachtree Corners’ Waterside Community Unveils Clubhouse and Amenities [+ PHOTOS]

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Waterside Community's upgraded clubhouse

The Providence Group of Georgia, a Atlanta homebuilder and developer, and its joint venture partner East Jones Bridge River Holdings, LLC, has put a whole new spin on amenities in the community of Waterside.

Located in Peachtree Corners and situated along the shores of the Chattahoochee River, Waterside provides multiple housing options that promote inter-generational living for those looking for a age-in-place community.

The 7,100 square-foot community clubhouse has a health and fitness center including aerobics room, two massage rooms and spa. There is a kitchen on the terrace level as well as a catering kitchen, expansive indoor and outdoor gathering rooms, card room and conference spaces on the main level.

“This marks a significant milestone for the Waterside community as it opens the doors to this exciting, state-of-the-art clubhouse amenity, which will allow for endless opportunities for social engagement throughout the community,” said Lisa Murphy, VP of Strategy at The Providence Group.

The gated community is also approved for golf carts so residents can take full advantage of this Peachtree Corners location, which was recently named to the Fortune 2023 list of 50 Best Places to Live for Families.

 “Waterside residents will enjoy the balance of city conveniences and genuine outdoor, close to nature and state-of-the-art amenities, said Ty White, Partner with East Jones Bridge River Holdings. “Whether you are looking for outdoor activities, shopping, dining or entertainment, you will find it just minutes from your front door.”

Located one mile from The Forum on Peachtree Parkway, Waterside’s initial phase of development focused on single-family detached homes, two-story and three-story townhomes with elevator options and unique one, two and three bedroom condos with private garages and no shared corridors.

Construction is now underway in phase 2, which will be a continuation of townhomes and condominiums, as well as 13 unique single family homes with views of the Chattahoochee River.

Learn more about Waterside in Peachtree Corners by visiting here.

Photos courtesy of Waterside Community

For more Peachtree Corners land use and development news, click here!

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Business

Alliance Residential Company Opens Broadstone Peachtree Corners

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Pictured: Exterior of Broadstone Peachtree Corners

Alliance Residential Company, one of the largest multi-family developers in the nation, has opened Broadstone Peachtree Corners, a luxury mixed use community, featuring for sale townhomes and 20 for rent offices available to the public, branded as Second Story, A Private Office Collective.

Nestled next to Technology Park and set across 9.23 acres, both Broadstone Peachtree Corners and Second Story were designed to suit the needs of today’s remote and hybrid workforce that call the technology rich city of Peachtree Corners home. 

“As technology companies invested in Peachtree Corners, it has become a hub for innovation and is experiencing tremendous growth, with housing and alternative office solutions in high demand,” said Alliance Residential Managing Director Noah Randall

Located at 5672 Peachtree Parkway and designed by Brock Hudgins Architects, Broadstone Peachtree Corners five-story residential building includes studio-, 1- and 2-bedroom apartment homes.

Interiors feature condo quality finishes, including two distinct interior finishes schemes, designer lighting, premium Samsung appliances and nine-foot ceilings. Select homes feature oversized kitchen islands, custom entry benches and soaking tubs. 

Taking inspiration from the abundance of green space throughout the city, the community features a nature-themed design scheme woven throughout its interiors to immerse residents in a magical woodland setting. 

The community offers an impressive array of amenities, including a resort-style pool, fully equipped fitness center with private fitness studios, game lounge with indoor golf simulator and putting green, pet spa and dog run, clubroom with custom seating spaces and entertaining kitchen and a landscaped courtyard with outdoor games, grilling station and fire pit. 

Second Story, A Private Office Collective, offers individual office space for rent to both residents of Broadstone Peachtree Corners and the surrounding community.

The collective features two reservable conference rooms, a co-working lounge with adjoining private outdoor terrace and community kitchen. Also included are high speed internet, access to on-property EV charging stations and a dedicated business mailing address.

“We envisioned Second Story as a space that seamlessly incorporates wellness into one’s daily work routine and viewed this as an important differentiator from other for rent communities in the submarket,” said Randall.

Click here for more Peachtree Corners development news.

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Land Use and Development

Peachtree Corners Traffic Improvements Will Continue into 2024

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With so much development in Peachtree Corners these days, City Councilman Phil Sadd hosted a town hall meeting to update residents.
A very preliminary proposal for a roundabout on the Peachtree Corners Circle side of The Forum.

With so much development in Peachtree Corners these days, District 1 City Councilman Phil Sadd hosted a town hall meeting on Nov. 2 to update residents on changes happening in the city. One topic that garnered the most discussion was traffic projects.

“There are many different projects we’ve been doing throughout the city. We’ve got major intersections where we can improve traffic flow,” Sadd told the audience of about 100.

“There is no silver bullet to fix traffic, but we’re looking at where traffic exists at specific intersections and what we can do to improve the traffic flow,” he explained.

Widening of Spalding Dr and Crooked Creek Bridge
The first completed project Sadd touched upon was the widening of Spalding Dr over Crooked Creek, which included a new bridge.

As part of Gwinnett County’s 2017 Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) program, Spalding Dr was widened from a two-lane road to a four-lane highway, spanning from Winters Chapel Rd to Holcomb Bridge Rd.

“Before the project started … it was two lanes going across the bridge, not really a sidewalk on one section, no sidewalk on the other side. The street often flooded. There was no curb and gutters,” said Sadd.

“It’s gone from two lanes to five lanes over the bridge. We got a center lane turning lane onto River Exchange,” he added.

The project was coordinated by Gwinnett County, the city of Peachtree Corners and the city of Sandy Springs, with an estimated cost of $10.8 million. It took about three years for the project to be completed.

“Part of it is also connected to the intersection of Winters Chapel Rd at Spalding Dr where we added a right turn lane,” said Sadd. “If you’re in the line of traffic and someone in front of you is turning left before you just had to wait for that person to turn left. Now you can pop into the right-hand lane and keep going.”

The fully completed development will have multi-use paths along Spalding Dr as part of the T-SPLOST project.

Improvements will include a multi-use path along the south side of Spalding Dr, from Winters Chapel Rd to River Exchange Dr, and a sidewalk on the north side of Spalding Dr from Winters Chapel Rd to River Exchange Dr.

The sidewalks will connect to the existing sidewalks on Holcomb Bridge Rd and provide improved accessibility to Crooked Creek Park and the surrounding neighborhoods.

Traffic circles are making the ‘rounds’
Another significant development is the traffic circle at Medlock Bridge Rd and Peachtree Corners Cir. Although it’s completed, it is adjacent to intersection improvements at Medlock Bridge Rd and Bush Rd, which is expected to be finished in fewer than three months.

Once residents get comfortable with traffic circles, it appears that there will be many more in the city’s future.

With the traffic snarls leading into The Forum, the city is looking into putting in another traffic circle.

“If you’re turning left out of The Forum by Trader Joe’s, it’s extremely difficult,” said Sadd. “And turning left into The Forum at that spot is also difficult. A traffic circle will help with congestion at that location.”

The preliminary design is underway now.

Holcomb Bridge Rd at River Exchange Dr project
The Holcomb Bridge Rd, Spalding Rd, and River Exchange Dr project is a Georgia Department of Transportation initiative scheduled to start in the summer of 2024.

The project was approved in 2019 and is expected to cost $2.7 million upon completion.

Authorities hope the project will improve traffic flow, relieve congestion and reduce delays at the intersection of SR 140, Holcomb Bridge Rd and Spalding Dr by enhancing accessibility and utilizing adjacent intersections to facilitate traffic.

The plans are to remove the dedicated left-turn lanes along Spalding Dr at the intersection of SR 140 and Holcomb Bridge Rd and reroute them to existing intersections along River Exchange Dr and Wetherburn Way.

The changes will primarily be minor street widening, milling and inlaying and concrete median installation.

Click here for more Peachtree Corners development news.

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