23-story ‘SkyHouse Luxury Apartments’ planned for Midtown

Caleb J. Spivakreal estate59 Comments

skyhouse rendering ~ what now, atlanta?

Novare Group plans 320-unit luxury apartment tower for West Peachtree Street.

Novare Group, a developer of mixed-use high-rise communities in southeastern urban markets, drafted comprehensive plans for a new 23-story luxury apartment tower in May.

Called SkyHouse, the 23-story apartment building and parking garage is proposed for development at 1084 West Peachtree Street.

Construction would begin October 2011 with a scheduled completion of November 2012, according to the plan.

An aerial site map shows the proposed apartment tower on 12th street between Spring and West Peachtree Streets taking space currently utilized for parking.

SkyHouse would offer 320 units and approximately 8,400 square feet of ground level retail.

The apartment tower would have floor-to-ceiling windows, generous amenities, high-quality finishes and covered parking, according to Novare’s plan.

Check out the aerial view and renderings of Skyhouse:

skyhouse aerial view ~ what now, atlanta?

skyhouse rendering ~ what now, atlanta?

skyhouse rendering ~ what now, atlanta?

skyhouse rendering ~ what now, atlanta?

SkyHouse isn’t the only planned apartment building for Midtown. Selig Enterprises, Inc. and Daniel Corporation are planning a 22-story apartment building for their 12th & Midtown development.

Click here to view a PDF of Novare’s SkyHouse plan.

SkyHouse
1084 West Peachtree St NW
Atlanta, GA 30309

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Caleb J. Spivak23-story ‘SkyHouse Luxury Apartments’ planned for Midtown

59 Comments on “23-story ‘SkyHouse Luxury Apartments’ planned for Midtown”

  1. Will

    looks like any other boring Novarre building: boring, bland and designed to make them money. weren’t they going bankrupt at one time?

  2. Ford

    Look at the big ole detached parking deck…this is exactly the car-centric development that we need! Maybe they’ll configure the sidewalks to dump you out onto the parking deck entrances and exits for a more exciting pedestrian experience. Way to go Novare!

  3. Malory

    It’ll never fly with out any greenspace… not with the mayor’s push to incorporate greenspace in to every new development!

    And agreed- it looks boring and bland! Not somewhere I would want to live

  4. Mishap

    The deck is ugly but it beats the decrepit single story vacant store front and a surface lot.

    I’m wondering if they’re skipping the integrated parking since they realized it probably costs a lot more to engineer. Either that or they have dreams of renting the spots to people who work in Midtown.

    As for Novare going bankrupt, I think that was the worry when they built the Atlantic but I think they just defaulted on the non-recourse loan and handed it off to the FDIC/Starwood. Who knows how they survived but they seem to have sold off almost all their inventory in buildings they do still have an interest in.

    As for making money…isn’t that the whole point of the game? Developers that lose sight of their most profitable customers lose their buildings. The glass towers may be ubiquitous but it seems their deviation to a luxury tower wound up failing miserably so they’re doubling down on the sure bet of glass and raw concrete.

  5. Urbanist

    Parking here really needs to be modified so that it isn’t so destructive to future development. Underground (considerably more expensive), internalized (which may mean a taller building), or simply smaller, with less room for cars. Having a building who’s parking lto takes up a bigger footprint than it does, and in the process ruins any prospects for future development along the street-front it faces is piss poor.

    Oh, and I believe I said something before about Atlanta being in bed with the same small cast of major developers, who build the same boring styles of buildings. I don’t recall if I put Novare on that list, but they definitely need to be there.

  6. SB

    They will have to find construction financing (ie the people with all the money at risk) so this may never happen. Lenders don’t give money to folks with a dozen foreclosures in the past few years.

    I know some elements of Novare’s history having partnered on a deal with them before but can not share. I will just say that for construction loans, the developer typically is just signing recourse that they will complete the building…. and Novare did complete The Atlantic. Corporately they had numerous investors and corporate lender that essentially took over all the assets. In that sense, I would say the Novare you see today is in the same company in name only.

  7. Chris

    At least the parking decks on these new buildings are incorporating in some retail space. That’s better than nothing. However I think a configuration like 1010 Peachtree would be better, where the building is built on top of the parking deck and still incorporates retail.

  8. Urbanist

    What will likely happen is Novare will run the development, but they’ll bring in an equity partner with a clean(er) record to act as the sponsor. This will mean signing on any guarantees, having control of the deal, etc. Novare will likely also invest in the deal, just without much a controlling interest. Unless, of course, there’s a bank out there that would be willing to finance this deal.

  9. Concerned

    I wish Novare would just go away – haven’t you messed Atlanta up enough already?????? The last thing we need right now is more apartments – the only reason developers are jumping on this bandwagon is because apartment developments are the only source of financing right now. That doesn’t necessarily MEAN we need more apartments, Mr. Border!!!!

  10. Urbanist

    @ Concerned – Atlanta’s urban area has a fraction of the apartments that other major cities do. Midtown doesn’t have even remotely close to the amount of foot traffic a major urban neighborhood should have, which is largely why so much of the retail space in the neighborhood is vacant. While I agree that I don’t think Novare should be the developer here, I completely disagree with the notion that we don’t need anymore apartments.

    New supply over the past 2-3 years has been very limited, while home ownership rates are falling, and old obsolescent apartments have been demolished (but not replaced). The point here is that apartments are a good investment (i) in the future of the city, as they bring people in, and (ii) because they are the one sector of real estate right now with truly excellent fundamentals.

  11. Chris

    Why the hell is everyone so afraid of apartments? Having an apartment doesn’t mean the hood rats are all gonna move in.

  12. JT

    I am in total agreement that this building if built to these plans is as boring as they come, completely uninspiring. However, can someone shed some light on the Novare hate? I think Spire and Viewpoint were great additions to Peachtree St. and the Atlantic while a victim of the economy is a gorgeous building and a great addition to the skyline.

  13. Steven G. Baile

    It is important that developers listen to the community. I too have received several comments to our new phase at 12th & Midtown. To add some clarity, apartments have always been a component of the 12th & Midtown master plan.

    We have not put an emphasis on the order of the phases but rather the feasibility of each component and at this time we feel the market is prime for apartments, high-rise or otherwise. We would have hoped to be delivering the project by now but the global economy and subsequent difficulties for funding have postponed many projects.

    I strongly agree with Urbanist, the fundamentals are very strong in Midtown and we feel the need for infill, pedestrian and transit oriented multi-family is an under-served aspect of the Atlanta market. We don’t anticipate this being a project that the commuity will view as “what were they thinking!” but rather a much needed addition to an already dynamic environment.

    We plan on Breaking ground this fall with a delivery of the first units in early 2013.

  14. Mike

    Concerned – what are you smoking? We definitely need more apartments in Atlanta and especially Midtown/Downtown. What we need less of right now is for sale condos until the market improves.

    I also hope they make the parking deck a little smaller and/or incorporate more retail or greenspace. A parking deck wrapped in retail is better than a parking lot.

  15. ponceyhighland#1

    My excitement in seeing this headline was quickly crushed after seeing the renderings. We definitely need more apartments/foot traffic in Midtown but this rendering is horrible. The building is bland and garage horrific. Atlanta deserves better than this. I really hope this gets modified or denied.

  16. Stanford Cardinal

    Perfect….more housing choices for Urbanist – a renter for life. Ahhh, the perks of underachieving are so gratifying.

  17. Urbanist

    The “hate” is more a “disinterest” in having a concentrated percentage of the Atlanta skyline look like Novare’s playground. Not only are their buildings incredibly boring from an exterior point of view, but their interiors are incredibly drab. The Eclipse, the Spire, the Viewpoint – all similar characteristics, all boring as hell. The most glaring aesthetic problem is the fact that most of their developments have a tone of raw, exposed concrete, internally & externally. This is obviously cheaper, and I get that raw loft space is “in”, but newly constructed raw loft space is fake and lame. And who the hell wants to live in a place that feels like a solitary confinement box, anyhow?

  18. Inman Parker

    Midtown is in need of apartments. Transient, young professionals are the majority of people that want to live in midtown. It is hard to justify buying a condo when you are not sure how long you will be in Atlanta. I do wish they would make more of an effort to hide the parking garage from pedestrians or put it underground entirely.

  19. Clicker

    So much hate for the parking decks! Just where do all of you people park your Prii and Tauri? And would you really rent in that part of town without a guaranteed space to put your jalopy? Doubtful.

  20. JT

    Urbanist we agree for once there is nothing about any of the new construction buildings in Midtown that I find the least bit appealing, especially to buy, but I think their general look will lend itself better for rentals. But yes, the for the most part feel very, “institutional”. thats why i chose an older building in Midtown, a little off the core of the “mile” but much more inviting.

  21. jonc

    Too bad this can’t be like the Atlantic Station makeover where the head honcho is listening to our ideas. Are you listening Novare? We want smart design !

  22. Urbanist

    @ Clicker – The city of Atlanta needs to become less car friendly. Period. Thats obviously requires much more comprehensive planning than “lets do away with parking garages”. However, building a massive concrete structure that is going to take up all that frontage along Spring Street, just like the Plaza’s does along 7th street (I think), is extremely short-sighted. It basically says, sure we’ll allow all this space that has future economic potential, to be wasted because the developer wants a big parking lot for it’s tenants.

    Integrated parking (like at 1010) is the way to go. I would say underground, but that would probably make the project uneconomical. It shouldn’t be very difficult to figure out a way to create a parking deck that doesn’t ruin the aesthetics or economics of the rest of the block.

  23. Darin

    I’m happy to see so many people posting a dislike for this enormous parking structure. I’m unhappy with this design too.

    As a native and a downtown resident, I can tell you that the situation in Atlanta tends to be this: if you build a parking deck, it’s going to stay there for decades. These are not temporary structures that will be torn down and replaced in a few years as area development grows.

    Since parking decks stick around for such a long time, it’s best to make sure that they fit in with the urban fabric well and that they don’t hinder the progress of good urbanism (namely, pedestrian-friendly development) in the future.

  24. Sean

    Funding Funding Funding. Without that this will never happen. Tell me what bank is going to fund this with all the other vacant buildings around it.

  25. Clicker

    @Urbanist – The city NEEDS to become less car friendly? Or you WANT the city of to become less friendly? Big difference you know.

  26. Urbanist

    @ Clicker – NEEDS to be. There are 420,000 people that live in the city of Atlanta, and traffic is a nightmare. If Atlanta is to ever become a great city, it’s going to have become substantially more dense. That’s going to mean a lot more people in a smaller area. If all of those people bring cars with them, the city won’t be able to handle it.

    There is a drastic need for better public transportation currently, and that need will just become greater the more Atlanta grows. If city officials don’t get their heads out of their a$$es and start developing transportation links between inner city neighborhoods, as opposed to wasting money by dragging MARTA up to North Fulton and worrying about commuters in Cobb County, the problem will just get worse. However, if they build those urban links (and by that I mean doing it where it matters, not this ridiculous streetcar project between Centennial Park and Auburn Ave), and develop, over time, real estate that accommodates car ownership less and less, then they have a chance.

  27. M

    LOL @ how many people hate on Urbanist.

    I like the building from 12th and Midtown creators more, but again, this area can benefit from more parking and more luxury apartments. The parking deck here is ugly as hell (reminds me on Aqua, and how every time I see that building all I see is the parking deck on it).

    As long as they dont try to rape my wallet when I park there, ill be fine with it.

  28. Clicker

    Thanks for the urban policy lesson.

    But I still say that if you build a 520 unit apartment high-rise in the city of Atlanta in this decade, you darn sure better have enough parking spaces for those units or you won’t lease a-one of them. Period. Regardless of what some pie-in-the-sky ‘urbanist’ thinks, dreams or wishes.

  29. Chris

    M, ff you don’t live there why would you worry about parking there? MARTA is just 2 blocks away, in 2 directions! I would never drive to Midtown or Downtown. It’s so easy taking MARTA. Then you get get wasted at the new, lame sports bar and not worry about driving home when you’ve had too many Miller Lites!

  30. AC

    Here’s an idea:

    Buy out the owners of one of Noavare’s many condo towers in town, and lease the units as apartments. Solves 2 problems (relieves pitiful Novare condo owners who will never be able to sell for any decent amount, and fills the need for intown apartments).

    Voilà!

  31. falcon2000

    Hey Stanford Cardinal. Whats wrong with being a renter? That doesnt mean you are an underachiever. In this day and age that means smart. Im guessing these apartments will go for at least $1500/mo and up. Im guessing you cannot even afford that because you are stuck in a morgtage for the next 25 years and your house/condo is worth what it was back in 1999 and the value is still dropping. Sucker!

    And the parking garage on this rendering is horrible Novare. Please put the garage on the bottom floors of the building instead of making it look like an add on to the building. Jeesh.

  32. Kevin Leonard

    All I have to say is that they had better price them right. 1010 is still at 38% occupancy as of a month ago… I wonder how much longer they’re going to hold out.

  33. Big Doan

    Get more people in Midtown, whatever it takes. Either of these towers would bring desirable tenants. Parking deck like this, or not. This isn’t a vile monstrosity like some of the awful decks downtown, at least. The amount of vacant retail space on our signature street, and even on offshoots in Midtown, is flat embarrassing. I used to take ATL visitors on drives on these streets. Not anymore. They ask what has malfunctioned. We go to Decatur or Inman Park instead. Where things happen. Where street life exists contiguously, not in patches.

  34. Big Doan

    And let’s close down Crescent Ave. to vehicle traffic. Maybe that won’t be feasible until the Selig tower is built, but do it then. Blew my mind to see they’d closed a cross-street in Times Square. Instead of idling taxis, there’s a hundred cafe tables in the former street. Would be an amazing atmosphere in the canyon with ground-level bars and restaurants that Crescent is shaping up to be.

  35. Stanford Cardinal

    @falcon2000 – I happen to be very comfortable in my home. Not every home owner happens to be underwater or losing tremendous value. I’m really not worried about price fluctuations. I personally believe home ownership is a desirable way of life, not an investment. At the end of the day, I could careless if I make no money when I sell or even if I lose money. It’s really not a big deal.

    Also, you are correct, renting is not considered underachieving for everyone. There’s definitely a time and place for renting. My comment was for Urbanist. He’s a know it all, over opinionated, underachiever with a less than stellar career – who happens to rent (see the correlation). He spouts off on this open forum as if he was a proven expert. Unfortunately, he’s far from that. I’ll have more respect for the guy when he shuts up and actually does something that’s noteworthy.

  36. Urbanist

    @ Stanford – Care to substantiate the “underachiever with the less than stellar career” comment?

    I’m certainly opinionated – no question about that. I’m also a proven professional (I won’t go so far as say I’m an expert, because I haven’t made enough mistakes yet to earn that designation). Not only do professional accomplishments (which I’m not here to gloat about) make me very knowledgeable about the field of urban design/planning, but an individual passion and devotion to it do as well.

    Now, you may not like the fact that I know more than you, or that my opinions are supported by a lot of factual evidence, or that I happen to just be an a$$ some of the time. However, as snide or critical as my remarks may be sometimes, there’s a lot of validity to them – as opposed to your purposeless babbling. Since I’m nothing but an icon with an opinion, the assumption that you know anything about me or my career is entirely baseless.

    I am, of course, a renter. However, I’m a renter by choice, not necessity. I choose so because (i) I saw home ownership as a bad economic choice over the past few years, and still do, (ii) I enjoy my mobility, and (iii) I don’t yet need the space that a home requires one to have.

  37. DAntonio

    Wow, so much hate for Urbanist, Haha! While he is without a doubt very opinionated and he doesn’t necessarily make the kindest remarks, from an urban development standpoint there is some merit to most of the things that he says.

    Atlanta definitely needs more apartments for rent like this in core areas like Midtown to increase density and foot-traffic, which will result in more retail, restaurant components, etc. There is no way that The Midtown Mile will become anything close to The Magnificent Mile, Champs Elysees, Madison Avenue, and all the places that it compares itself to without increasing density and foot traffic. And by increasing density, they have to improve public transportation to decrease the need for cars which Midtown won’t be able to handle once it does become dense.

    As far as the parking deck goes, yes the fact that it is partially hidden by ground-level retail is much better than nothing, but none-the-less it will indeed hinder future development and needed density in that area. I really do hope that they rethink the design and the parking deck before construction begins, and its good to know that these are probably not the final designs.

    @jonc, you hit it right on the head, It is too bad they are not listening like Mark Toro and the Atlantic Station crew. :)

  38. Clicker

    Hinder future developments? Have you looked at a Google Map of Midtown lately? There are enough empty lots to cover development for 30+ years at the rate this economy is moving!

    A parking deck on Spring at 12th is the least of this city’s problems.

    (By the way, not buying that Urbanist and DAnotonio are not one and the same. Verbiage and paragraph structure are way too similar.)

  39. frankly

    With regards to the “boring” and “bland” Novare buildings people just need to get over it. This is certainly no architectural masterpiece and it doesn’t need to be. These are not “skyline” buildings but they are great infill. Go to ANY dense city and you will see numerous similar residential buildings.

    What you should be more concerned with is that the street level is attractive and improves the pedestrian experience. That is what will make Midtown a great urban place. Unfortunately, this project only does the bare minimum allowable with respect to the street level but at least having the retail space there allows for a relatively easy up-fit by future retailers.

  40. Urbanist

    @ Clicker – The economy has been, for the last 3 years, mired in – or coming out of – a cheap money / real estate driven recession, so if things progress at the rate they have been, for the next 30 years, there’ll be a lot worse things to worry about than parking decks. However, since it’s highly unlikely that such poor economic growth will be the case, it helps to have a viewpoint that extends farther out than the next couple of months. With a parking deck taking a majority of the frontage on the Spring Street side of that block, you could be looking at a barrier to new development for the next 20-30 years…a high price to pay when there are a lot of other alternatives to provide parking that don’t involve “hindering future development”. And for the record…no D’Giorno and I are not the same people.

  41. DAntonio

    @Clicker, I agree a parking deck is MUCH better than all of the surface lots around town, and I would take a parking deck over them any day, but for as far as a long-term development strategy, it would be more beneficial to have this deck underground.

    BTW, I can be assured that Urbanist and I are definitely NOT that same person.

  42. Volkan

    Here are my thoughts.

    1) the development is bland and uninspiring.if the city was smart it would mandate greenspace at the very least.

    2) the parking deck is an awful idea. It takes up sidewalk frontage. It needs to be integrated into the main structure, built underground or designed as mixed-use storefront.

    3) having said that, high end rental is exactly what midtown needs. The operative word is “high end” though. Rents must be in the $1500+ range. If they attract the right crowd the development will be a boost.

  43. Urbanist

    I don’t know that it has to be high-end to be successful or a positive addition to the neighborhood. I’m not saying it’s a bad thing that these apartments will be on the upper end of rentals, but I do think it’s a bad thing if the neighborhood tries to turn itself into a neighborhood of nothing but high-end condos and rentals. After all, the higher the price point, the more tempting it is to some to buy rather than rent, which could wind up isolating a lot of people from living “in-town”.

    Another bad side effect of focusing on “high-end” rather than diversifying the types of residences available is that when you build high end, the city will continue to select the chain developers like Novare, and our skyline will be a bunch of boring buildings with even lamer units, appealing to those with a little money and no taste (think Buckhead). Going forward, I think the city needs to start finding some new developers who can bring in some unique architecture and different “price-points” into the rental maker.

  44. jonat

    Spot on Urbanist. I would hate to see Midtown become the new Buckhead, although plenty of people would say that’s already happened. There needs to be a ranges of rental rates for Midtown to stay vibrant and interesting.

  45. Dan

    I wonder if rents at these “high-end” apartments throughout the city will ever go up. In many other cities $1500/mo is average or even considered to be cheap. But I guess that is just one good thing about Atlanta right now, almost anyone can afford to live in a “high-end” rental.

  46. Urbanist

    Ha…I didn’t think of Buckhead of being an exclusively high-end neighborhood, but if anywhere in Atlanta is, it’s probably Buckhead, and we all know Buckhead is about as interesting as a Ford Taurus.

  47. It's me

    $1,500 rent would be a Godsend…I now live in Arlington, VA…my small 1 br is $1,900 per month plus $100 for parking per month…and that’s considered cheap for the DC area.

  48. inthenabe

    I agree with the other commenters who recognize that the Novare structures are dull, brab, boring, and have too much exterior concrete which makes the buildings look extremely cheap. I would love to see another developer besides Novare build something in Midtown. The midtown skyline is being destroyed by these hideous structures. And as for the interiors… yawn.

  49. Pittstop

    Really, another glass ivory tower. Can’t someone come up with a better idea. How many more of these do we need and who is going to buy them. How many are still unsold, on the market, fore closures. Do they not have any clue what so ever. Really…Seriously…Why?..Very sad for Atlanta…

  50. Pittstop

    OOPS>>>> my error… Apartments not condos but still the same…There are more apartments that aren’t rented…Still sad, who needs them…

  51. Chad

    I’ve read about the proposed realignment of 12th street between W. Peachtree and Spring. I’m all for the realignment, but that would still leave a jog at Crescent Ave (a hot new area for 12th and Midtown projects).

    Wouldn’t it make more sense for the realignment to take place between Crescent and W. Peachtree? That would make 12th a straight shot from Williams St. to Piedmont Rd.

    I would hope that would also shift the position of 12th and Peachtree’s Phase 4 plan to be three sided on 12th, Crescent, and 11th.

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