Johns Creek approves $350M mixed-use project with Avalon vision

Toro Development Company rendering for Medley.

Credit: Toro Development Company

Credit: Toro Development Company

Toro Development Company rendering for Medley.

Johns Creek has approved a luxury mixed-use development intended to be the bedrock of the city’s 192-acre Town Center.

The project will bring for sale townhomes priced $800,000 to $1 million, 110,000 square-feet of office space, upscale shops, apartments and entertainment venues. Residents in support of the overall project say the high number of rental units in the design do not compliment the city’s residential lifestyle.

Toro Development Company plans to build the estimated $350 million development on 42 acres at Johns Creek Parkway and McGinnis Ferry Road. The project, called Medley, will be similar to Alpharetta’s Avalon but suited to the residents and location of Johns Creek, said Mark Toro, principal of the firm.

During a Monday meeting, Johns Creek City Council unanimously approved rezoning to allow for the project.

“You’re offering something to our community that I think is special and unique that we really need,” Mayor John Bradberry said before the vote.

In addition to Medley, the completed Johns Creeks Town Center landscape will include City Hall and parks with multiuse trails, playgrounds and an amphitheater.

Medley will be located at the former corporate site for State Farm Insurance occupying most of that acreage. Medical device producer Boston Scientific plans to build a new $62.5 million manufacturing and supply chain facility on 14 acres of the total 55.5-acre property.

Toro formerly worked on the North American Properties team that built Avalon. He described Medley to council members as a similar project in approach, luxury and style. The differences lie in the size of the two projects and who they attract, he said.

Medley, which is designed with 200,000 square feet of commercial space, 137 townhome units and 750 apartments, will be located on less than half the number of acres as Avalon. And Medley will be a draw for mostly local residents, Toro said.

He described Avalon as a “super regional draw” with 7.5 million visitors over the last 12 months including 55,000 on Black Friday.

Similar to projects in other north Fulton cities, Johns Creek residents and officials have said they want to keep the number of apartment units as low as possible and asked about condominiums as a possibility. Councilman Larry DiBiase commented that he did not want to see an increase in apartments for the project.

During public comment, resident Katherine Keeney said Johns Creek is “a community of long-term residents.”

She added. “Homeowners are the ones that drive our city not renters. Having that many apartments in one area, not only is it dense, I don’t think it’s great for a city as a whole.”

Toro said projects such as Avalon and the forthcoming Medley are made successful because of residents living on the properties and their continuous engagement in activities that take place — shopping, dining, events etc.

Toro and Johns Creek Community Development Director Ben Song said there is not a demand for condos in today’s real estate market.

Apartments at Medley will rent for prices similar to Avalon, Toro added, which range from $3,500 to $5,600 in rent. There is a waiting list for apartments at the highest rent price, he said.

Toro Development Company plans to start construction next summer and build the project in two phases with estimated completion in 2027.