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Braves Seeking Tax Break For Truist Office At The Battery

The Plaza at The Battery at Truist Park

The development arm of the Atlanta Braves is trying to drive home a 15-year tax abatement for a new office tower at The Battery at Truist Park that will be occupied by the stadium's namesake.

But at least one member of the Development Authority of Cobb County is crying foul on the reigning World Series champions' application, which would break a previous vow the team gave when it received $300M in public subsidies to develop the mixed-use complex, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported this week.

“One of the things that I recall, when the Battery and the park were built, was the promise that the Braves … would not come back and ask for additional abatements beyond what was already being provided to the ballpark. How does that fit into this coming in and the Braves basically asking for tax abatements on the property?” Karen Hallacy, a development authority board member, said during the Braves' presentation Tuesday, according to the AJC.

The Braves and Truist announced earlier this month that the bank, formed in 2019 when BB&T and SunTrust merged, planned to move its securities division in Buckhead into a new 250K SF office tower 300 feet from home plate. During the presentation, Braves Development CEO Mike Plant countered that the organization was reneging on any promises about seeking additional abatements for The Battery.

“We're not asking for them. Truist is,” Plant said, according to the AJC.

The vow stems from a 2013 deal made between the Braves and former Cobb County Commission Chairman Tim Lee (who died of cancer in 2019) for $300M in public financing for the stadium and mixed-use project. The Braves and their partners paid $372M on top of the public funds for The Battery at Truist Park, which today encompasses 660K SF of office, the Omni Hotel, prominent retail and apartments. The project is also home to the North American headquarters of elevator maker Thyssenkrupp, including its elevator testing tower, and the headquarters of Papa John's.

The new tower, which will cost $200M, is slated to be built on land owned by the Braves, which will be leased to Truist for 15 years, according to the AJC. The board voted 5-2 to continue talks with the Braves and Truist for the project.