Atlanta’s tallest building will soon welcome its visitors in a much different way.
Commercial real estate company Shorenstein has started construction on an approximately 1.2-acre urban park in front of Bank of America Plaza, it announced last week. Planned to finish this summer, the project is aimed at helping update the iconic property in the face of changes to office use brought about by the coronavirus pandemic.
“Open air and the ability to get out of the office is now more important than ever,” Shorenstein Vice President Jack Corey said in a statement. “Top talent needs and expects to have outdoor space, particularly in the environment we’re in now, and Shorenstein’s investment in this project reflects our commitment and belief that South Midtown is indeed the next talent hub in Atlanta.”
The changes to the 600 Peachtree St. property come as projects in the South Midtown area crop up in response to growing commercial demand for the district. The redevelopment of the 45-story former AT&T Midtown Center is coming along at 675 W. Peachtree St., while construction for Norfolk Southern’s new 750,000-square-foot headquarters at 650 W. Peachtree St. is also underway and expected to finish in September.
For its part, Bank of America Plaza counts as tenants tech companies like Featurespace, Flexport, and Riskalyze, as well as legal and professional services firms like Troutman Pepper, Hunton Andrews Kurth and LBBS.
Shorenstein says it expects both visitors and tenants to use the tower’s new greenspace.
Plans call for incorporating trees and other plant life along with new hardscape zones, including concrete and granite pavers, wood decking, and new seating areas. The project will also look to remove barriers between the building and its environs, making new sight lines from the street into the building.
Rounding out the project team alongside Shorenstein are general contractor Humphries & Co. and architecture and design firm Lord Aeck Sargent.
“Bank of America Plaza, the tallest building in the Southeast, has stood as a regional icon on our skyline for decades, with its instantly recognizable gilded capitol serving as a city-wide beacon, orienting Atlantans for years with its towering presence,” Lord Aeck Sargent Project Manager Gray Kiser said in a statement. “Yet, as a product of the early 1990s, the tower has never achieved any meaningful relationship with the street or its immediate context.
“The task of our project is to reintroduce Bank of America Plaza back into the fabric of Downtown and Midtown.”