Published on November 18th, 2016 |0
Mill Creek receives $6-$7 million tax incentives for Modera Buckhead project
The incentives will net a 25 percent discount in ad valorem taxes for “Modera,” which recently broke ground next to The Shops Buckhead Atlanta and which is expected to yield Chronicle article.
The tax abatement incentive has been used for years to encourage more investment and development across parts of Fulton County—especially distressed development areas. Atlanta’s economic development officials also use a similar program.
Dist. 7 Atlanta City Councilman Howard Shook, who has been outspoken against the use of such tax incentives for developers in Buckhead, years ago stopped the then Atlanta Development Authority from providing such incentives for the developer of the Elle apartments on Pharr Road, immediately adjacent to the Mill Creek site.
Shook also has been critical of the Fulton County Development Authority’s use of such developer incentives in Buckhead, such as those that were granted to the developers of the St. Regis hotel and residences when it was built.
“I hesitate to say anything positive about that (Fulton County) board, but for the first time they insisted on some associated public benefits,” Shook told BuckheadView. “Still, these things shouldn’t be in Buckhead period, as I said in (Atlanta’s city) Finance Committee this week.” Shook’s district includes the Mill Creek site.
The units at Modera, which is expected to be completed by the summer of 2018, will cater to young professionals seeking luxury apartments overlooking the Buckhead Village and The Shops Buckhead Atlanta project — six-blocks of upscale with more high-rise residential and office space, according to earlier reports by BuckheadView.
Development Authority attorney Sandra Zayac told the Business Chronicle the property tax abatement allows Mill Creek Residential to make numerous improvements to the site that would have otherwise reduced its profitability—such as Mill Creek’s costs to bury power lines, complete landscaping and streetscape upgrades, and replace an existing public storm water pipe.
The incentives also assure at least 10 percent of Modera’s apartments are available for workforce housing, Zayac told the Business Chronicle.
Both city and county economic development officials are making the addition of affordable housing a priority. However, most new high-rise apartments in Buckhead are averaging $2.50 a foot, or about $1,500 to $2,000 for studio and one-bedroom units.
The tax abatement incentives may also help developers defray the soaring cost of Buckhead land. Developers have been paying often more than $10 million an acre to acquire sites in Buckhead’s East and West Village, according to the Business Chronicle. Mill Creek paid a little over $16 million for the site at Peachtree and Pharr.