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Why Jamestown's Bronfman Sees Most ATL Real Estate Like a Newlywed Couple


The brains behind Ponce City Market really doesn't see another opportunity for Jamestown Properties in Atlanta anytime soon. And you can thank “permissivezoning for that, Jamestown's Matt Bronfman tells us just days before our Atlanta State of the Market event 7:30am, Thursday, Oct. 22, at Overlook III.


Jamestown has made its mark by redeveloping unique properties that are hard to replicate in any given market. Ponce City Market and White Provisions are its two hallmarks in Atlanta. But, even though the firm has redevelopment holdings left in the city—1400 West Peachtree and Riverview Landing in Smyrna—Matt says Atlanta is on the back burner for new projects. That's because it's hard to add value to new development when so many other developers can come out of the ground around you with the same project. “That's probably why we don't do more in Atlanta,” he says. Municipalities are too eager to approve projects. “I'd rather see Atlanta become more stringent in zoning,” he says.


Matt says he would support some form of development standards that would dictate a consistent commercial building aesthetic along the Beltline, similar to those found in NYC and San Fran. That would help constrain new supply and give existing landlords a chance to see rents rise.


Matt says Jamestown also has no plans on deviating away from developing unique projects like Chelsea Market in NYC or Ghirardelli Square in San Francisco. “I think as a company, what we like to buy are unique assets,” he says. Those assets are better fortified against real estate and economic cycles, and they “evolve and get better with age.” “I look at a lot of real estate around Atlanta, and I sort of compare it to a bride or groom on their wedding day. It's sort of the best they're ever going to look.” Hear more from Matt along with Fuqua Development's Jeff Fuqua, Cushman & Wakefield's John O'Neil, and Integral's Egbert Perry at our Atlanta State of the Market event next Thursday. Sign up here.