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|Buckhead could actually see office developers move forward on new development as soon as 2014. (So if you didn't think pigs could fly... they still can't, but this is better.)|
|Hines Interests' Kurt Hartman made this bold prediction Friday during our Future of Buckhead event at the Ritz-Carlton. He and other panelsists noted that Buckhead's vacancy rate could very well show dramatic drops (from the 20% range now) in coming quarters, and that once job growth kicks back in, developers could again consider new projects in the area. ?Buckhead has had a remarkable comeback,? he says. ?The balance of the market is actually very, very healthy.? (The market gets a regular flu shot and physical.)|
|As we all know, Buckhead is considered ground zero for the over exuberance of office developers in this past cycle, with four new towers and some 2M SF developed, almost entirely on spec. When the crash occurred, the vacancy rate soared to more than 20%. But Regent Partners' David Tennery says that is likely reversing to below that by year's end. ?And that has ocurred in the face ofnegative job growth. It's a pretty strong statement about Buckhead and why people want to be there,? he says.|
|No, this is not a scene from The Nutcracker at The Fox. Duke Realty's Kerry Armstrong says that most Class-A landlords in Buckhead have been able to hold face rates steady, despite the Recession. ?The difference is the concession packages,? he says, which are still heavy on TI allowances and other incentives. Once those burn off, Buckhead rents should be in good shape.|
|Our audience of some 400 CRE pros were treated to a little pep talk by none other than the ?Mayor of Buckhead? himself Sam Massell(interviewed by PMRG's Bill Weghorst, who also sponsored the event), who notes that with 76,000 residents, 5,300 hotel rooms, 23,000 apartment units, 23k SF of office space and 60 art galleries, Buckhead ?offers you everything that any major city offers except for professional sports. We leave that to Downtown.? With Buckhead's population jumping by 17.8% in the past 10 years (whereas Atlanta only grew by 0.8%), Sam says he expectsresidents to double in 20 years as well.|
|We took a moment to chat with sponsor Clubcorp's Amy Spivey andKellyann Dunning. The two tell us the famous Buckhead Club already has gone through some renovation, adding two ?drop-in? rooms for meetings and an new 80-inch wall-mounted flatscreen TV in the lounge (right there by the coffee machines, as we know all to well).|
|We got a couple of other (BIG) pieces of news from our event coming this week, so stay tuned. In the meantime, send your news toJarred@Bisnow.com|