Demolition begins to transform Doraville shopping plaza into $65M complex

Credit: Casey Sykes

Credit: Casey Sykes

Demolition began Tuesday to turn an aging and mostly vacant shopping center in Doraville into a $65 million complex featuring more than 300 apartments and commercial space.

The Village at Tilly Mill Crossing, formerly known as Friday’s Plaza, will be the new site of Lumen Doraville, which the northern DeKalb city hopes will transform its western entrance. The mixed-use complex will consist of two new residential buildings with more than 320 apartments as well as approximately 35,000 square feet of commercial space.

From today's groundbreaking at Lumen: Our City of Doraville City Manager, Chris Eldridge takes the first swipe at knocking down Friday's Plaza with this excavator.

Posted by Doraville Mayor Joseph Geierman on Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Most of the retail space will come from redevelopment of the shuttered shopping center. More than two-thirds of the existing structures at 6259 Peachtree Industrial Boulevard will be demolished to make way for the new buildings, according to developer Kaufman Capital Partners.

“This is going to change the entire landscape,” Garry Sobel, senior vice president at Kaufman Capital, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “It’s a 35-year-old shopping center that is functionally obsolete.”

Sobel added that the project could be the catalysis for growth in the region, which he said had been forgotten about as a commerce center for decades. He said it could spark further redevelopment along Peachtree Industrial Boulevard into neighboring Brookhaven and Chamblee.

Doraville granted a $19 million property tax abatement to Kaufman Capital. As part of the deal, they must set aside three discounted-rate apartments for Doraville police officers and must invest $50 million in the project. Kaufman Capital is partnering with Atlantic Realty Partners on the redevelopment. In addition, Truist Bank signed on to provide a $43 million construction loan to assist in the project, Sobel said.

As part of the tax abatement, the project’s deadline for completion was set for March 2023 to allow for delays possibly caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Sobel said nothing has popped up since then to delay the project’s timeline.

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