Atlanta's Edgewood Community Sees Revitalization Project

The project is the first of three phases, which will include a neighborhood park, restaurant and performing arts center.

📅   Mon October 24, 2016 - Southeast Edition
Cindy Riley - CEG Correspondent

Capstone Building Corp. photo.
A total of 25,000 cu. yds. (19,113 cu m) of dirt/material will be moved during construction.
Capstone Building Corp. photo. A total of 25,000 cu. yds. (19,113 cu m) of dirt/material will be moved during construction.

A significant urban revitalization project in Atlanta's Edgewood community is coming to life, as construction crews continue work on a $33 million, five-story multi-family housing development. The development will feature 224 units in 232,218 sq. ft. (21,573 sq m) of residential space above a 103,044 sq. ft. (9,573 sq m) concrete, structured parking deck.

The project is the first of three phases, which will include a neighborhood park, restaurant and performing arts center and additional housing and commercial users, as well as Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) patron replacement parking.

“Given Atlanta's traffic situation and the need for more sustainable development, building dense housing at a subway and intermodal station — two blocks from a terrific shopping center featuring everything from restaurants to Target to Kroger — just makes sense,” said Dillon Baynes, managing partner of developer Columbia Ventures. “We offer a value proposition in term of rental rate to Fourth Ward and Midtown, while being at a much more neighborhood scale.

“We expect to have everyone from young people entering the workforce, to university students from downtown, to anyone who works near a MARTA station and wants to skip the commute. We even expect some empty nesters and others heading towards retirement.”

Baynes said now is the time to build. He described the development at the Edgewood MARTA station as an ideal location for millennials, based on its proximity to MARTA, retail and restaurants, and interconnectedness to all the other trendy in-town neighborhoods.

“Young professionals want convenience at their front door, and we have it in spades. Once inside, you have a functionally designed complex, with outdoor amenities, indoor private relaxing and socializing spaces, all run by others, providing a no-stress environment.”

The multi-family housing project is the initial phase of a transit-oriented plan to redevelop underutilized parking at the Edgewood-Candler Park MARTA station into a mixed-use property with residential, retail, dining and office space. MARTA is leasing the land and allowing developers to join them , with hopes of revamping and promoting the use of its transportation system.

“The western third is Spoke, our premier rental housing offering. The middle third, which begins in 2017, will feature a 20,000 square-foot Perkins + Will building, with a 140-seat performing arts center, and teaching headquarters for Moving in the Spirit, a youth development organization, centered on a new public park. We'll have a restaurant on the park, with outdoor dining. The east, which remains the commuter parking lot for now, will be developed in 2018 or 2019. Plans have not be finalized.”

Baynes said public/private partnership projects take time, but the results are unparalleled.

In 2014, MARTA, along with Invest Atlanta, selected Columbia Ventures as the development partner for the Edgewood/Candler Park Station transit-oriented development. The project is located on more than six acres of underutilized surface parking on the south side of the Edgewood/Candler Park Station. The project is part of MARTA's broader TOD initiative, which seeks to increase ridership, generate revenue and support local community development and regional economic development.

Birmingham, Ala., based Capstone Building Corp. is serving as general contractor for the development at Edgewood-Candler Park MARTA Station.

Joe May, senior project manager of Capstone Building Corp. said, “To maximize the available acreage, our structure will take up as much of the site as possible,” May said. “The size of the site was also a significant contributing factor to the decision to construct five-stories of wood-framed multi-family space on top of a two-story concrete parking deck.

“The tight building site will require us to work with the city of Atlanta to schedule street closings during construction. A tower crane will also be utilized throughout the build. This specific type of crane is not one that we often have to employ, but it will be extremely beneficial, given the size restriction of the building site and the height of our structure.”

May said following excavation, workers will put 688 geo piers into place. Then the vertical construction can begin with the two-story concrete parking deck, which will be extremely time-consuming.

“Due to the material and complexity of the structure, we estimate the parking deck will require seven months of work, said May. “That is a significant amount of time on a project scheduled to take a year-and-a-half from demo to completion.

“Weather has not been an issue, so far. In the five weeks we have been on site, we have only lost three days. We are extremely pleased with our current pace.”

Crews will be using fire-treated lumber for the five-stories of multi-family housing. May said the practice is outside the norm on multi-family housing, but was deemed necessary for the project.

A total of 25,000 cu. yds. (19,113 cu m) of dirt/material will be moved during construction. Main equipment being used includes three 345-size large excavators, a V8 bulldozer, a tower crane and approximately 25 dump trucks. Materials include fire-treated wood, manufactured wood and concrete.

“The revitalization of urban areas is occurring across the country, and the Metro-Atlanta area is no exception,” said Jay Chapman, CEO of Capstone Building Corp. “People have a desire to move closer to the city to be more mobile and reduce transportation costs. Capstone Building Corp. is proud to be serving as general contractor on this unique redevelopment project.”

Edgewood is a historic Atlanta neighborhood surrounded by Candler Park, Reynoldstown, East Atlanta and Kirkwood. The traditionally working-class community was first developed during Atlanta's post Civil War “boom” period of 1870 to 1910. Annexed by the city in 1909, it expanded as a bedroom community for workers of the railroads, factories and mills.

The current revitalization project is being praised by members of the Organized Neighbors of Edgewood (ONE), a group of community members who meet to solve problems and help the neighborhood move forward and promote a livable and sustainable area.

“Edgewood is located in a rapidly growing area of Atlanta, and access to transit is essential to maintain and improve quality of life for individuals of all incomes,” said Omar Zaki, who serves as president of ONE. “Adding additional living space to the mass transit station will add economic activity and life to an otherwise unproductive parking lot. We hope the transit-oriented development will become a center of activity in our neighborhood.

“The neighborhood worked hard with MARTA and the developer to get a site plan that adds quality of life improvements to the surrounding area. I am excited to see the project getting off the ground.”

Zaki said, “Edgewood is a diverse, dynamic and rapidly growing community in the city of Atlanta.

“We are proud of our history, and look forward to a bright future.”

The Edgewood-Candler Park MARTA station is located at 1450 La France St., and is within walking district of the Edgewood retail district and numerous neighborhoods. The station was opened in 1979 and serves the Blue Line and Green Line.

Construction is set for completion by early January 2018.

(This story also can be found on Construction Equipment Guide's website at CEG