February 28, 2019
Jamestown is hoping that it can make lightning strike twice.
The developer that turned an abandoned and dilapidated Sears, Roebuck & Co. warehouse into Atlanta’s most successful adaptive reuse project now has its sights set on The Shops Buckhead Atlanta.
The Shops is already a successful six-block mecca with retailers like Hermes and Dior, and office space anchored by tenants including the 86,000-square-foot headquarters of Spanx.
In the evenings, employees from nearby offices gather at Le Bilboquet for cocktails or head to Shake Shack or Fado for more casual eats. It’s usually easy to find a parking spot in the decks, or on the street and there’s rarely a wait for the restaurants.
It’s easy to see why Jamestown is reportedly negotiating to buy the complex, which the Atlanta Business Chronicle estimates is worth $200 million.
But The Shops Buckhead Atlanta never quite had the same buzzy bursting-at-the-seams vibe of Ponce City Market, which attracts people from across the state of Georgia, plus cities within driving distance such as Birmingham, Chattanooga, Nashville and more.
People pack into Ponce City Market’s boutique retail stores including Ponce Denim Company and Cobbler Union in addition to high-end national stores such as Williams-Sonoma and Anthropologie. They wait for tables at popular restaurants like H&F Burger, Brezza Cucina and Hop’s Chicken, and queue up to buy tickets to the rooftop entertainment complex that features arcade games, mini golf and a giant slide.
The 2,500+ parking spaces at Ponce City Market are often completely full on the weekends and during peak times like holiday shopping season, while a steady line of Uber and Lyft drivers ferry patrons to and from the complex and hundreds of people trickle in from the BeltLine.
With 2.1 million square feet of retail, residential and office space, Ponce City Market now commands some of the highest office rents in the city. The last bits of office space leased for $53 per square foot, setting a new record for Atlanta rents.
Many people are now watching to see if Jamestown, which is a private equity fund based in Germany, can replicate the success of Ponce City Market by creating new energy and buzz at The Shops Buckhead Atlanta.
We’re thinking yes.
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