Vertical growth in neighborhoods due west of Midtown is officially continuing.

Chicago developer Sterling Bay and Charlotte-based Asana Partners joined Invest Atlanta and Metro Atlanta Chamber officials Monday to break ground on the 1050 Brickworks project. The spec office and retail mix has been called “a bold move in today’s market,” in which office ventures have recently been paused in other white-hot U.S. markets.

Project leaders acknowledge that building the 250,000-square-foot stack of offices on spec—without a single signed tenant in place, that is—is a “high-risk move” fewer developers are taking on in an era of inflation and rising interest rates. The 1050 Brickworks project, in Sterling Bay and Asana’s view, “symbolizes Atlanta’s strength as a market worthy of continued investment and underscores the city’s ability to withstand national economic headwinds,” per an announcement this week.

Today, the 1050 Brickworks site houses several low-rise commercial buildings on about 1.3 acres, between West Marietta Street and active railroad tracks. The HKS-designed replacement will stand 14 stories, with about 14,000 square feet of retail at its base.

The 22-story, glass-encased Seven88 West Midtown condos—a high-rise pioneer for the area—stands just across the railroad tracks.

Designs for retail operations along West Marietta Street at 1050 Brickworks. Roughly 14,000 square feet of street-level retail is planned. Courtesy of Sterling Bay/Asana Partners; designs, HKS

Like the nearby Stella Lofts apartment high-rise—the next Star Metals District phase, which Allen Morris Company has filed for permits to begin developing—the spec offices prove investor bullishness isn’t waning in Home Park, the Marietta Street Artery, and other formerly industrial neighborhoods west of Midtown.

The project aims to help convert the West Marietta Artery’s character from industrial railroad district to a more walkable, mixed-use community. It’s also expected to complement and anchor the 166,000 square feet of dining, retail, and service space next door at Brickworks, which Asana Partners bought in 2020.

The venture marks Sterling Bay’s first foray into Atlanta. Asana, meanwhile, has been active acquiring and redeveloping property along the BeltLine’s Eastside Trail, including Krog Street Market and SPX Alley, in addition to acquisitions like Plaza on Ponce, the iconic shopping center where the Plaza Theatre operates.

Beyond walkability to a growing slate of neighborhood retail, entertainment, and living options, 1050 Brickworks’ perks are expected to include a fitness center, private library, a lounge and bar, outdoor workspaces, and private terraces for tenants. Other aspects call for a large deck overlooking the Atlanta skyline, some 12,000 square feet of amenities, and a parking deck with 549 spaces.

Find the most detailed look at the project to date in the gallery above.

• Photo tour: L.O.A. is a rooftop attraction like Atlanta's never seen (Urbanize Atlanta)