ATLANTA - Central Atlanta Progress’ (CAP) Eighth Annual Downtown Development Day, held earlier this month in partnership with Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) Atlanta, sold out and provided an unparalleled update on Downtown’s current and planned projects and land available for future development.
Bernie Marcus, chairman of The Marcus Foundation, gave the keynote address via video and discussed the economic impact of the Georgia Aquarium, which has become a destination with more than 50 percent of visitors from outside the state. Marcus is well known for funding the Georgia Aquarium in downtown Atlanta, which early next year, will open its $110 million dolphin exhibit expansion that he also funded.
Atlanta City Councilman Kwanza Hall presented a briefing on the Atlanta Streetcar in light of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s decision to give the city $47.6 million to help fund the 2.6-mile loop from Centennial Olympic Park to the King Center. Hall said organizers have identified 13 project areas along the route that are “ripe for investment.” Dozens of Downtown Development Day attendees got a firsthand look at the route on the Atlanta Streetcar Tour that took place at the end of the event.
The breakout sessions also attracted large audiences and coverage from local print and broadcast media. During the “Land of Opportunity” session, Forest City Enterprises Executive Vice President Emerick Corsi said the Cleveland-based REIT is considering an investment in Downtown.
CAP President A.J. Robinson and Atlanta magazine Publisher Sean McGinnis presented the following awards to deserving companies, among several distinguished nominees:
Downtown Atlanta Economic Impact Award: Coca-Cola Co.’s was honored for its investment in strengthening and advancing the downtown community through its Pemberton Place development, home to the World of Coca-Cola.
Atlanta Downtown Design Excellence Award (Community): Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Hughes Spalding was recognized for its campus redevelopment project which entailed the construction of a new 71,000 square-foot hospital and renovation of 7,000 square feet of existing structure.
Atlanta Downtown Design Excellence Award (Office): Cooper Carry was recognized for its urban office space on the 24th floor of 191 Peachtree Tower Building.
Atlanta Downtown Design Excellence Award (Restaurant and Bar): Grindhouse Killer Burgers received an award for its retro burger counter at Sweet Auburn Curb Market featuring a grungy and historic, yet clean feel.
The event featured an expo which showcased new and planned real estate projects as well as Downtown-focused initiatives and concluded with experts from esteemed companies who offered knowledge and insight into what is happening in Downtown during three concurrent panels.
Event sponsors included-Gold: Lanier Parking and AmericasMart; Silver: Barry Real Estate Companies, Georgia Power, Reznick Group, Richard Bowers & Co. and Cousins Properties; Bronze: Atlanta Development Authority, Walter P. Moore and Associates, Epstein Becker Green, Stites and Harbision, PLLC, and Wilbert News Strategies.
ABOUT CENTRAL ATLANTA PROGRESS/ATLANTA DOWNTOWN IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT:
Central Atlanta Progress, Inc., is a Downtown business association with approximately 200 members. Its mission is to build a vibrant community with strong leadership and sustainable infrastructure that is safe, livable, diverse, economically viable, accessible, clean, hospitable and entertaining.. The Atlanta Downtown Improvement District is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, charitable corporation created by CAP to make Downtown safer, cleaner and more hospitable.