BeltLine SAP Application Filed for Westside QTS Data Center Expansion

The SAP Application filing includes fresh renderings and a more detailed site plan for development titled Project Granite
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Progress continues for QTS Data Centers expansion of their westside campus as the developers file a BeltLine Special Administrative Permit (SAP) Application last week complete with a more detailed site plan and building renderings. The SAP application states that the expansion, titled Project Granite, will be built in phases, the first of which will be two data center and office buildings totaling 1,15,000 square feet, 900,000 square feet of which will be data center floor area and 250,000 will be office space. The remaining phases would see the construction of a 350-unit mixed-use residential building at the corner of Herndon and Marietta, a mixed-use commercial building to the northeast of the data center buildings and 50 townhomes along Herndon. The project would also include approximately 2,000 parking spaces for non-residential use and 650 spaces for residential use.

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This would effectively double in size what is already the largest data center in the Southeast, according to QTS. The existing datacenter buildings total 970,000 square feet of space on a 95-acre campus. However, this project scope appears to be scaled back from that of a previous filing with the Georgia Department of Community Affairs for a project with a 1.15 million square foot data center and 640,000 square foot office space. What Now Atlanta previously reported this discrepancy in regard to Project Granite‘s rezoning application, and this most recent filing appears to confirm the scaled back scope.

The site plan also includes details for street extensions, streetscape improvements, plaza construction, and potential connections to the BeltLine itself. Church Street would be extended across the site, curving toward Marietta Street parallel to the BeltLine. An access corridor to the BeltLine would connect to Church Street to the BeltLine beneath the proposed mix-use commercial building. Additionally, a new street would be created to the south of the data centers and extend across the development to provide public access to the BeltLine, and private access to the data center buildings and the existing buildings to the south. Two private north/south roads would traverse the development and would only be accessible to data center tenants, which would require a variation from the The Atlanta BeltLine Subarea 9 Street Framework Plan.

The currently unoccupied site was previously home to the WestRock packaging facility and was acquired for $80 million in 2018 West Midtown Acquisition Company LLC, a subsidiary of Kansas-based QTS. Previous filings have indicated QTS hopes to complete the project in 2024.

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Daniel Alvarado

Daniel Alvarado is an AICP Certified Urban Planner, transportation advocate, researcher and writer originally from San Antonio, Texas. He received his Master's Degree in Community and Regional Planning from the University of Texas at Austin, where his research focused on the intersection of green infrastructure and transportation. Daniel has been published by Decipher City, Progrss.org, and has contributed to dozens of comprehensive and transportation plans across the country.

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2 Comments

  1. Pretend I know nothing about urban planning and commercial real estate local processes. To whom was this special application permit applied? Are there open hearings and meetings as its considered?

    Also, do I understand this to mean the project would have both public and private access to the beltline? Finally, given the recent uptick in crime, I hope that improved safety and security can be achieved without curtailing public access, though I can’t think of how at the moment. Thanks.

    1. Hey there, the SAP is applied for through the City zoning office. There are hearings and meetings, to find the next available time for public comment I suggest contacting the City Clerk.

      The project would have only public access to the beltline according to the site plan. The data center will be enclosed in a large fence for security. Hope that helps.

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