A 16-story office building is in the works to be built on the corner of Perimeter Mall’s parking lot adjacent to the Dunwoody MARTA station.

A Google Earth map showing the site of the proposed Hammond Drive office tower and the MARTA station garage the developers propose buying.

The 350,000 square-foot office building, which would include a restaurant on the first floor, is planned to be built on approximately 2 acres of the mall’s parking lot fronting Hammond Drive in Dunwoody. The deal also involves purchasing one of the MARTA station’s parking garages. The developers, Transwestern, estimate the cost at $130 million.

Transwestern is buying the property from General Growth Properties, owner of Perimeter Mall. As part of the deal, General Growth will buy MARTA out of its lease of the parking deck closest to the mall; that lease expires in 2017. Transwestern will then buy the parcel and the parking deck from General Growth, said Trent Germano, senior managing director of development for Transwestern. Germano and his associates presented preliminary plans for the project to the Dunwoody Development Authority on May 19. The company plans to file a pre-zoning application and special land use permit request with the city on June 2.

Germano is seeking a 95 percent tax abatement from the Dunwoody Development Authority. Transwestern is expected to make another presentation to the Authority in July.

“Our competition is Perimeter Summit on the other side of the highway [I-285], now under construction, and they have an abatement through DeKalb County,” Germano said.

Germano and Transwestern are also developers for the Brookhaven/Oglethorpe MARTA station transit-oriented development.

The planned office building will eliminate 119 parking spaces from the mall, but those spaces will be replaced by parking spaces inside the parking deck, Germano said. The MARTA parking deck has 600 spaces; 481 spaces will be gated off from replacement mall parking to be used by those in the new office building.

Germano said the Dunwoody MARTA’s parking needs can be met with just one parking deck.

“This is in the heart of the Perimeter” and ideal for this kind of development, Germano said. “Jobs, office development — right in the hub right where it should be.”

Concerns about traffic always come up when development is proposed in the Perimeter Center. Germano said the proximity to the MARTA station would help foster use and support of public transit.

“Everyone says the [traffic] system is in failure during rush hour. MARTA is going to continue to be more important. We have to shift the dependency on the automobile,” he said.

Dyana Bagby

Dyana Bagby is a staff writer for Reporter Newspapers and Atlanta Intown.

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