Chamblee, GA, June 2, 2016 – by Trey Benton – The City of Chamblee’s Architectural Review Board will consider during their June 7th meeting, a proposed $64 million mixed-use development project that would transform the existing Nissan auto dealership at 5211 Peachtree Blvd. and its surrounding property. The applicant, Wakefield Beasley and Associates, proposes to demolish existing structures on the site and build a five-story apartment building and six-story parking deck, according to City documents.
According to a Letter of Intent, the project contains 386,119 sq. ft. of heated, occupied space (not including the courtyards, patio, balconies, and parking deck). The floor plan features 297 apartment units arranged around three open courtyards. Two small courtyards on the west side would be 2,772 and 3,542 sq. ft., respectively. The third courtyard would be 15,872 sq. ft. and include a swimming pool with deck and landscaping. There would also be amenities on the ground floor including a fitness room/ spa, pool bungalows, rail trail ice house with patio, mail room, leasing office, lobby, 2,382 sq. ft. of professional offices, 4,303 sq. ft. restaurant, and 6,371 sq. ft. of other retail space.
There are two scenarios contemplated in a Development of Community Impact report concerning traffic generation. “A preliminary analysis of this development would generate about 229 additional one-way vehicle trips in the PM peak hour under the first scenario (with convertible space as apartments) and 268 PM peak hour trips in the build-out with more commercial space on the ground floor,” the report says. (See chart)
The DeKalb County School District (DCSD) says that if approved, this development will add approximately 35 students to DCSD schools: 15 at Huntley Hills ES, 7 at Chamblee Middle and 10 at Chamblee High. DCSD estimates an additional 3 students would attend other DCSD schools. “This will make overcrowding worse at Huntley Hills,” says DCSD. “Which currently [Huntley Hills] has 6 portable classrooms on its grounds, and is already expected to grow by an additional 30 students by 2020, and a total of 53 by 2022.”
The Chamblee Downtown Development Authority (CDDA) is working on the final language of a Memorandum of Understanding to give the Hickman family and Del American Real Estate Group an $11 million tax abatement to “help stave off the repercussions of the additional cost which will be incurred while producing the $64,000,000 project.” Coincidentally, the property, located at 5211 Peachtree Boulevard is listed on LoopNet, a commercial real estate website, for $11,000,000 currently.
The current tax revenue paid on the site is approximately $140,000 per year ($20,000 to Chamblee, $45,000 to DeKalb County, and $74,000 to Dekalb County Schools). Those taxes will be locked in at those rates, according to the CDDA, and won’t increase until the abatement period ends. In addition, the CDDA will charge an administrative fee equal to 20% of abated taxes per year, which will eventually be used to fund other CDDA specific endeavors.
The current taxes paid to the City, County and the DeKalb County School system will continue to be collected at their current levels. This abatement, if approved, would be the third in a series of multi-million dollar tax abatements awarded by the CDDA recently. The CDDA aims to abate $11 million of the taxes the new development and its improvements (after being reassessed at completion) will bring over a maximum period of 18-years. Should the $11 million abatement pay for itself sooner than 18-years, the abatement period would end then, whenever that is.
The Chamblee ARB meeting will be held at 7:00 on June 7th. The full agenda packet can be found here. Chamblee Community Development Staff has recommended Approval, with conditions, according to the Staff Report.