Published on October 23rd, 2014 |2
Garden Hills strip center likely to be demolished in 30-60 days, owner says
Morgan told BuckheadView Thursday “we are almost ready to demolish the building,” which he referred to as the “eyesore on Peachtree.” He said there are just a couple of more details to be worked out before demolition can begin.
“We would like to get it down and out by the end of the year,” Morgan told BuckheadView. The demolition permit has been approved, according to the city of Atlanta’s website. Morgan did not elaborate on what details are presently holding up the demolition.
The strip shopping center—former longtime home of the Garden Hills Cinema art theater, Peachtree Bikes and Flemings custom leather goods—will likely be replaced, at least temporarily, by a vacant grassy patch.
Brand Properties owns all the strip center except for the La Fonda and Fellini’s restaurant buildings.
The property will “just be a land investment for us for the time being,” Morgan told BuckheadView. He said there has been lot of interest in the property “but there is nothing firm to discuss at this time.” He did not say if the interest was from potential tenants or for the sale of the property to another owner.
If the building is demolished in the next 30-60 days, it will have been almost a year since it was severely damaged by a fire the night of Dec. 4, 2013. Demolition of the building has been delayed by a slow resolution of the insurance claim for the fire damage. That was resolved this summer.
BuckheadView reported in early September that the demolition permit had been applied for through the city after the Brand Properties commercial site was the topic of discussion at two monthly community meetings.
The fire, which broke out in the store of Peachtree Bikes around 8 p.m. on Dec. 4, caused about $1.4 million in damages, according to early estimates, including smoke and water damage to five neighboring business in the Garden Hills
strip shopping center. All the affected businesses were closed at the time of the fire.
According to the Atlanta Fire Rescue battalion chief, the fire was confined to the retail space of Peachtree Bikes, however neighboring businesses were also affected, including longtime upscale leather goods merchant Flemings, a chocolates retailer Cacao, dog retail shop Woof Gang Bakery & Grooming, Witzlib fitness center and SixT car rental agency.
All those businesses have been closed at the shopping center location since the fire.
BuckheadView quoted Brand Properties President Michael Hoath in a June 2 story saying: “A disappointing slow response by the company that carries the insurance on the Garden Hills strip shopping center is what is keeping Brand Properties from even making basic cosmetic repairs to the property.”
Hoath told BuckheadView at the time. “We view the time they have taken to resolve this matter as unacceptable and we are doing everything we can to expedite the process. We have been told to not make any repairs or improvements to the property until after the claim has been settled.”
Finally, nine months after the fire and almost eight months after the Atlanta Fire Rescue Department declared the cause of the fire an accident, Hoath told BuckheadView in September “the
insurance company has declared the building a total loss,” which now permits Brand Properties to deal with the eyesore.
In the meantime, Peachtree Bikes has relocated a short distance up Peachtree Road to a two-story house which had been vacant some time at 2883 Peachtree and spent about $50,000 to renovate that house.
Flemings has moved to a new location at The Factory, 2148 Hills Avenue, Suite M, near the Peachtree Battle Shopping Center. Cacao is directing its customers to its Virginia Highland store location. SixT car rental agency, which had been operating out of a trailer in the parking lot behind the shopping center, has since moved further up Peachtree Road to a hotel location. Woof Gang Bakery & Grooming has just remained closed all this time.