3 Creative, Strategic Approaches to Infill Development

Photo Courtesy Granite Properties.

Looking for a way to spice up boring, drab infill development? Attendees had the chance to hear three case studies during the “Strategic Approaches to Infill Development” session at CRE.Converge 2017. Three panelists shared their stories of how their properties went from blah to brilliant.

Parkside Chamblee: A small but mighty reuse development in Atlanta

Eli Green, partner at Parkside Partners, saw an opportunity for adaptive reuse in this project, turning a warehouse into an office building.

“We were attracted to Parkside Chamblee because it’s located in an underdeveloped, yet rapidly growing market and close to a Marta station,” Green said. “We loved the exposed jumbo brick, wood roof decks and high ceilings.”

Parkside Partners added interior parking, street parking and secured off-site parking for the buildings – one 45,000 square feet and the other at 11,750 square feet. In addition, they added 50 skylights to allow more natural light into the building. The team also added a private patio with café tables and ping pong to maximize the outdoor space.

“Some people might’ve overlooked this building,” Green said. “But we knew there was something special here, especially since it’s so close to public transportation and nearby amenities.”

Georgetown Crossroads: Exploring a multi-story logistics facility

Dan Letter, managing director of Capital Deployment, West Region, Prologis, found 13 acres of empty land in south Seattle that stood out. Located in an industrial area close to downtown and Seattle’s port, it was an ideal spot to build a multi-story logistics facility.

The three-level building creates opportunities to divide up the space, with several dock-high doors and ESFR sprinkler systems. It will include freight elevators serving the upper levels with the capacity to drive forklifts with pallet into the elevator and common loading nodes on the sides of the property. The building is under construction and will be complete in 2018.

Factory Six03: A building from 1903 gets a facelift

Greg Fuller, president and COO of Granite Properties, Inc., redeveloped 215,000 rentable square feet of modern office space in a project dubbed Factory Six03. The building includes a ground floor restaurant/food hall, customer lounge, conference center, rooftop patio, lobby, a renovated outdoor plaza and hundreds of new parking spaces.

But before it was Factory Six03, it served several other purposes:

  • In 1903, it was the Brown Cracker & Candy Co.
  • In 1962, it was the Sunshine Biscuit Factory
  • In 1972, it was a home furniture company
  • In 1985, it was the West End Marketplace

With so much history, a project like this isn’t for the “faint of wallet.” Fuller told the crowd that if they want to makeover a historic building, they need to be prepared for the unexpected.

“We didn’t have any big environmental challenges, except for that time when we hit an 850-deep well,” Fuller said. “What would we find down there? Jimmy Hoffa or PCBs?” Luckily, neither.

An attendee asked if Fuller would do the project again, considering it was so much work. Fuller’s answer was an enthusiastic “yes.”

“Older buildings like these get higher rent than brand new buildings,” Fuller said. “Plus, it’s altruistic. It’s a great way to give back to your community.”

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