VIRGINIA-HIGHLAND—Days could be numbered for a pioneering property in Atlanta’s adaptive-reuse scene.

Two years after Halpern Enterprises—the owners of Amsterdam Walk for nearly four decades—launched an initiative called “Reimagine Amsterdam Walk” to let Atlantans chime in about the property’s future, Portman Holdings hopes to purchase and redevelop the 9-acre shopping center, taking advantage of its prime-time frontage on the BeltLine’s Northeast Trail and Piedmont Park.

The 11-acre property's context next to Piedmont Park today. Halpern Enterprises/Reimagine Amsterdam Walk

As the AJC reports, while all plans are preliminary, Portman aims to raze Amsterdam Walk’s current structures to set the stage for new commercial space (some of it meeting affordable leasing standards) and apartments. Current zoning would allow for more than 1 million square feet of commercial space; for context, Bank of America Plaza, Atlanta’s tallest building, has 1.3-million square feet. But one Portman official told the AJC they’re leaning toward more residential at this point.

Echoing Portman’s tactics with its Ponce-fronting development along the Eastside Trail, development heads say they’ll walk away from the potential deal if they can’t reach common ground with surrounding neighborhoods—a collaborative process that’s expected to start next week. Officials with the BeltLine, Invest Atlanta, Atlanta Botanical Garden, and others are reportedly on board with Portman’s plans, provided affordability requirements are met.

Halpern Enterprises/Reimagine Amsterdam Walk

Halpern Enterprises/Reimagine Amsterdam Walk

Originally home to the Campbell Coal Company warehouses, the Amsterdam Walk district reopened as shops in the 1990s and was given its current name more than two decades ago. Halpern officials say existing tenants would be given priority in the new development, provided they meet disadvantaged business qualifications.

Halpern Enterprises/Reimagine Amsterdam Walk

DOUGLASVILLE—About 20 miles west of downtown Atlanta, major Hollywood player Lionsgate is set to launch a $160-million film and TV production hub in Douglasville, with some facilities opening late this year.

The 40-acre complex, a partnership between Lionsgate and Great Point Studios, will feature more than a dozen soundstages, plus office and support space, across 500,000 square feet of production facilities, according to the Hollywood Reporter. The entertainment hub is being developed by Holder Properties.

Courtesy of Great Point Studios

This latest evidence of Georgia’s TV and film industry boom will take shape next to a $350-million development called The Trails—a mix of hotel rooms, offices, apartments, and townhomes, plus a commercial village with a park—that’s being put together by The Foxfield Company in Douglas County.

Courtesy of Great Point Studios

DOWNTOWN—Some rare good news from the downtown city jail beat: Construction has officially launched to turn the largely unused Atlanta City Detention Center into an around-the-clock resource center meant to help tackle homelessness, poverty, substance abuse, and mental health challenges.

In the works since 2021, the facility is geared toward giving police another option with non-violent offenders who would traditionally be booked into the overcrowded jail on Rice Street, left alone, or sent to Grady Hospital. Instead, Grady Health System will lead the center’s operations and offer participants access to services—in addition to immediate showers and hot meals.

The center is expected to open next year, according to city and county officials. 


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