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Old 07-01-2012, 11:07 PM
 
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Great points, kwcimbro. Of course, there are a ton of variables that we can't necessarily foresee. I totally agree with you on Clarkston and Dacula, but a couple of questions/points for you on the others...

Quote:
Duluth's only hope it to redevelop the Mall area with less retail and more high-end jobs and condos. A smaller edge city scenario. This isn't far-fetched either. I just think we are decade or two away.
I agree with you a lot on this one, but a major problem is that Duluth has no control over what happens at Gwinnett Place as it is unincorporated Gwinnett county. I don't know if it would benefit Duluth to try to annex the area, or if it would just create a huge problem for the city. It would definitely help that area to be under the protection of the very proactive Duluth police force, but I don't know if the added tax revenue would offset the increased cost of patrolling the area. Of course, even though they pay no city taxes, we do get a lot of the fallout from the area. Duluth uses county schools, and some of the mall area is districted in the Duluth cluster, so the more the area falls, the bigger strain it puts on the schools that our kids attend. It's a tough situation, and I don't know the solution.

I can tell you that as a resident of Duluth, most of my neighbors seem to have pretty much already written off the mall area. I kind of see why as it is easier for us to get to Suwanee or over to Johns Creek than Gwinnett Place. Mall of Georgia is only slightly further away, but in some ways it's about equal in terms of difficulty to get to. Duluth residents have figured out that they don't need Gwinnett Place, they would rather just go to Mall of Georgia, Suwanee, Johns Creek, and the Forum to do shopping. This is really a huge problem because it limits local interest in redeveloping the area. This is all anecdotal just from what I have noticed. I would still love to see Gwinnett Place bounce back, but despite my desires it seems to be declining instead of improving. I do think that the decline of the are will affect Duluth, even though it isn't actually part of our city. 99% of the metro area residents have no clue or care where Duluth city lines begin and end, so any nearby blight has a chilling affect. I'm totally for Gwinnett Place bouncing back, I just don't seem to have as much faith in it happening as you do.

Quote:
Doraville is positioned for a future comeback. It has industrial property that can become a large redevelopment tract and it can get easy support locally and regionally for rezoning.
I have to respectfully disagree on this one. Doraville is immensely industrial and I don't see that changing any time soon. If you look at the area around Pleastantdale/Best Friend Road, etc., you will see that it is pretty much ALL industrial. I don't know if zoning can do much to change that because the industry over there is still chugging along and I don't know if they would be inclined to sell even if rezoning allowed them to. I remember during the oil shortage a few years ago learning that there is a huge distribution area over there where massive oil pipelines converge, so I don't envision that up and moving any time soon. It's a perfect storm for industry because they have the railroad tracks and easy access to both I-85 and I-285, so I can't see the industry ever moving. It would have to be a situation where residences form adjacent to industry, and I can't imagine anybody ever wanting to live that close to it.

I'm not sure exactly where Doraville city limits are, but I do know that much of it (maybe all of it?) is in Dekalb and not Gwinnett. That means that for schools to improve would rely on Dekalb county, not Gwinnett, which is another huge hurdle. Dekalb does not have the best track record with its school system. The only people I know who live there do their best to get their kids into the Chamblee magnet program.

Thus, I would have some hopeful vision for the future of Chamblee, but not Doraville. It seems like the most likely scenario there is to simply let industry prevail and not worry about residential areas as much, and that's pretty much what they have done. It will continue to be a viable and important area commercially, but not a desirable place to live. I may have limited imagination, but I don't see a comeback for Doraville on a 20 or even 30 year timeline. Of course, comeback is an interesting term. Does Doraville have anything to come back to? Was it ever a desirable place to live? I don't see any great old houses or anything there that have fallen into disrepair, it looks like it was always kind of junky to me.
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Old 07-01-2012, 11:23 PM
 
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As mentioned, I would think the northern suburbs will be fine.

My take on the future of northeastern suburbs:

Doraville - Up (close-in with MARTA access)
Norcross - Up (close-in with a nice downtown)
Duluth - ? (could simply remain "bi-polar")
Tucker - ? (could go the way of Stone Mountain, but it is close-in with a revitalizing downtown; may depend on whether it incorporates)
Dacula - Down
Grayson - Down
Lilburn - Down
Snellville - Down
Lawrenceville - Down

I don't know enough about the northwestern suburbs to comment, but I would think Smyrna to be stable due to its location near job centers.

I don't see much of a future for most of the southwestern, southern, and southeastern suburbs.

As another poster said, it's all speculation. However, given the data suggesting Atlanta's economy is in a death-spiral, there will be plenty of suburban areas going into decline. An economy that fails to produce jobs yet continues to attract migrants will produce strong demand for low-income housing, and it will largely be supplied in those suburbs of Atlanta that lack proximity to high-income job centers.
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Old 07-01-2012, 11:30 PM
 
207 posts, read 250,405 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLTJL View Post
Great points, kwcimbro. Of course, there are a ton of variables that we can't necessarily foresee. I totally agree with you on Clarkston and Dacula, but a couple of questions/points for you on the others...


I agree with you a lot on this one, but a major problem is that Duluth has no control over what happens at Gwinnett Place as it is unincorporated Gwinnett county. I don't know if it would benefit Duluth to try to annex the area, or if it would just create a huge problem for the city. It would definitely help that area to be under the protection of the very proactive Duluth police force, but I don't know if the added tax revenue would offset the increased cost of patrolling the area. Of course, even though they pay no city taxes, we do get a lot of the fallout from the area. Duluth uses county schools, and some of the mall area is districted in the Duluth cluster, so the more the area falls, the bigger strain it puts on the schools that our kids attend. It's a tough situation, and I don't know the solution.

I can tell you that as a resident of Duluth, most of my neighbors seem to have pretty much already written off the mall area. I kind of see why as it is easier for us to get to Suwanee or over to Johns Creek than Gwinnett Place. Mall of Georgia is only slightly further away, but in some ways it's about equal in terms of difficulty to get to. Duluth residents have figured out that they don't need Gwinnett Place, they would rather just go to Mall of Georgia, Suwanee, Johns Creek, and the Forum to do shopping. This is really a huge problem because it limits local interest in redeveloping the area. This is all anecdotal just from what I have noticed. I would still love to see Gwinnett Place bounce back, but despite my desires it seems to be declining instead of improving. I do think that the decline of the are will affect Duluth, even though it isn't actually part of our city. 99% of the metro area residents have no clue or care where Duluth city lines begin and end, so any nearby blight has a chilling affect. I'm totally for Gwinnett Place bouncing back, I just don't seem to have as much faith in it happening as you do.


I have to respectfully disagree on this one. Doraville is immensely industrial and I don't see that changing any time soon. If you look at the area around Pleastantdale/Best Friend Road, etc., you will see that it is pretty much ALL industrial. I don't know if zoning can do much to change that because the industry over there is still chugging along and I don't know if they would be inclined to sell even if rezoning allowed them to. I remember during the oil shortage a few years ago learning that there is a huge distribution area over there where massive oil pipelines converge, so I don't envision that up and moving any time soon. It's a perfect storm for industry because they have the railroad tracks and easy access to both I-85 and I-285, so I can't see the industry ever moving. It would have to be a situation where residences form adjacent to industry, and I can't imagine anybody ever wanting to live that close to it.

I'm not sure exactly where Doraville city limits are, but I do know that much of it (maybe all of it?) is in Dekalb and not Gwinnett. That means that for schools to improve would rely on Dekalb county, not Gwinnett, which is another huge hurdle. Dekalb does not have the best track record with its school system. The only people I know who live there do their best to get their kids into the Chamblee magnet program.

Thus, I would have some hopeful vision for the future of Chamblee, but not Doraville. It seems like the most likely scenario there is to simply let industry prevail and not worry about residential areas as much, and that's pretty much what they have done. It will continue to be a viable and important area commercially, but not a desirable place to live. I may have limited imagination, but I don't see a comeback for Doraville on a 20 or even 30 year timeline. Of course, comeback is an interesting term. Does Doraville have anything to come back to? Was it ever a desirable place to live? I don't see any great old houses or anything there that have fallen into disrepair, it looks like it was always kind of junky to me.
I mostly agree with you about Doraville, but I do think there is a glimmer of hope for revitalization in Northwoods, a large neighborhood of mid-century ranches on the east side of Buford Highway, inside I-285. The neighborhood is architecturally-distinct, and, if the city improved pedestrian connectivity, could provide an option for those desiring a single-family home within walking distance to a MARTA station.
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Old 07-02-2012, 12:42 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DunwoodyPanhandle View Post
Atlanta's economy is in a death-spiral,
You're a broken record. I never see you post in the threads saying the opposite of what you are.
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Old 07-02-2012, 01:22 AM
 
Location: Atlanta
6,462 posts, read 7,326,760 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLTJL View Post
Great points, kwcimbro. Of course, there are a ton of variables that we can't necessarily foresee. I totally agree with you on Clarkston and Dacula, but a couple of questions/points for you on the others...


I agree with you a lot on this one, but a major problem is that Duluth has no control over what happens at Gwinnett Place as it is unincorporated Gwinnett county. I don't know if it would benefit Duluth to try to annex the area, or if it would just create a huge problem for the city. It would definitely help that area to be under the protection of the very proactive Duluth police force, but I don't know if the added tax revenue would offset the increased cost of patrolling the area. Of course, even though they pay no city taxes, we do get a lot of the fallout from the area. Duluth uses county schools, and some of the mall area is districted in the Duluth cluster, so the more the area falls, the bigger strain it puts on the schools that our kids attend. It's a tough situation, and I don't know the solution.

I can tell you that as a resident of Duluth, most of my neighbors seem to have pretty much already written off the mall area. I kind of see why as it is easier for us to get to Suwanee or over to Johns Creek than Gwinnett Place. Mall of Georgia is only slightly further away, but in some ways it's about equal in terms of difficulty to get to. Duluth residents have figured out that they don't need Gwinnett Place, they would rather just go to Mall of Georgia, Suwanee, Johns Creek, and the Forum to do shopping. This is really a huge problem because it limits local interest in redeveloping the area. This is all anecdotal just from what I have noticed. I would still love to see Gwinnett Place bounce back, but despite my desires it seems to be declining instead of improving. I do think that the decline of the are will affect Duluth, even though it isn't actually part of our city. 99% of the metro area residents have no clue or care where Duluth city lines begin and end, so any nearby blight has a chilling affect. I'm totally for Gwinnett Place bouncing back, I just don't seem to have as much faith in it happening as you do.


I have to respectfully disagree on this one. Doraville is immensely industrial and I don't see that changing any time soon. If you look at the area around Pleastantdale/Best Friend Road, etc., you will see that it is pretty much ALL industrial. I don't know if zoning can do much to change that because the industry over there is still chugging along and I don't know if they would be inclined to sell even if rezoning allowed them to. I remember during the oil shortage a few years ago learning that there is a huge distribution area over there where massive oil pipelines converge, so I don't envision that up and moving any time soon. It's a perfect storm for industry because they have the railroad tracks and easy access to both I-85 and I-285, so I can't see the industry ever moving. It would have to be a situation where residences form adjacent to industry, and I can't imagine anybody ever wanting to live that close to it.

I'm not sure exactly where Doraville city limits are, but I do know that much of it (maybe all of it?) is in Dekalb and not Gwinnett. That means that for schools to improve would rely on Dekalb county, not Gwinnett, which is another huge hurdle. Dekalb does not have the best track record with its school system. The only people I know who live there do their best to get their kids into the Chamblee magnet program.

Thus, I would have some hopeful vision for the future of Chamblee, but not Doraville. It seems like the most likely scenario there is to simply let industry prevail and not worry about residential areas as much, and that's pretty much what they have done. It will continue to be a viable and important area commercially, but not a desirable place to live. I may have limited imagination, but I don't see a comeback for Doraville on a 20 or even 30 year timeline. Of course, comeback is an interesting term. Does Doraville have anything to come back to? Was it ever a desirable place to live? I don't see any great old houses or anything there that have fallen into disrepair, it looks like it was always kind of junky to me.
For Doraville... the key thing I would look at is the GM site as a future catalyst site. GM still wants to sell the property. They are holding onto it, because they see it as a high value redevelopment site during any growth boom. We had a growth boom in the 90s and another in the 2000's. It might be 10 years, but I'm sure GM will off-load that property as soon as the market is ripe for growth a gain.

That site is a huge portion of the city. The advantage Doraville will have with a redevelopment of the GM site is immediate access to Spaghetti Junction (85 -and- 285), as well as Peachtree Industrial going north, and a MARTA station.

It will rise or fall on the redevelopment of that site and as of now GM is holding that site making a bet it will be worth money.

For Gwinnett Place Mall... I'm aware it is not in Duluth. I'm actually from Lilburn and much of the mall -area- east of 85 is actually closer to Lilburn than Duluth.

I think the area is better off -not- being in a city. They would be better off increasing their millage rate on the CID to match that of a city. They are already self patrolling (I think they have their own private security force now) and they have seen a reduction in crime on businesses from it.

I know people of Duluth (and for that matter... people of Lilburn, Lawrenceville, et al.. ) is passing on Gwinnett Place. (On our side we go to The Avenue @ Web Gin instead of the Forum ). The county was over-retailed. If Discover Mills and Mall of Georgia had not been built Gwinnett Place would be a much different place today. But this is what I want to highlight from my previous post... They need to de-emphasize retail. They have too much of it. That is why they need to focus on the office and condo market. They need to not try to attract us back as a mall area.

The perceptions you just gave about why you don't go there was largely based on where you want to shop.

From my point of view Gwinnett Place Mall is the central point of Gwinnett Co. It is the single most connected place. It has the largest amount of public infrastructure (arterial roads and freeway access). It is perfectly situated for business offices. It is one major reason why NCR located there. Good regional access. I also think it will help if TSPLOST passes and they can widen Pleasant Hill all the way into Johns Creek.

One thing I would note many smaller business districts pop up at the beginning of a freeway bottleneck caused by merging roads. The idea being workers can get off the freeway right as the bottle neck begins from multiple freeways. That point has higher levels of access.

Midtown, Buckhead, and Peachtree Corners all all examples of this. Commuters from Ga 400, 85, and 75 can get to Midtown w/o getting on the most congested freeway in town, the downtown connector. This is why Midtown has grown and downtown stays more stagnant.
Another way of looking at the same Phenomena. I-75 North is 5 lanes, I85 north is 6 lanes, and Ga 400 north of 85 is 3 lanes... a total of 14 lanes. The connector after they all merge is 7 lanes. This gives midtown higher access to the northside, than downtown, and there is an extra 7 lanes of capacity that can't physically make it onto the connector. This is why Midtown popped up in the 90s and it is why it popped up so far north.

This is also why it is important that we have the Spring st-Buford Hwy connector, and the 10th, 14th, and 17th street exit distributor system cars can access before 75 and 85 merge.

On a much smaller level... I see this happening at Gwinnett Place.

However.. I don't think it will happen until cheaper greenfield sites along 316 and 85 are built out with 1-4 story office or office/industrial hybrid buildings. When the county reaches point where it is "built out," there will be more attention at the core. There are still a few sites still open along 85 @ Sugarloaf and Lawrenceville-Suwanee Rd.

I also think they need to make better use of each freeway route connecting to the mall area w/o merging or sharing exits with others. This is key.
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Old 07-02-2012, 01:50 AM
 
Location: Atlanta
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Originally Posted by DunwoodyPanhandle View Post
As mentioned, I would think the northern suburbs will be fine.

My take on the future of northeastern suburbs:

Doraville - Up (close-in with MARTA access)
Norcross - Up (close-in with a nice downtown)
Duluth - ? (could simply remain "bi-polar")
Tucker - ? (could go the way of Stone Mountain, but it is close-in with a revitalizing downtown; may depend on whether it incorporates)
Dacula - Down
Grayson - Down
Lilburn - Down
Snellville - Down
Lawrenceville - Down

I don't know enough about the northwestern suburbs to comment, but I would think Smyrna to be stable due to its location near job centers.

I don't see much of a future for most of the southwestern, southern, and southeastern suburbs.

As another poster said, it's all speculation. However, given the data suggesting Atlanta's economy is in a death-spiral, there will be plenty of suburban areas going into decline. An economy that fails to produce jobs yet continues to attract migrants will produce strong demand for low-income housing, and it will largely be supplied in those suburbs of Atlanta that lack proximity to high-income job centers.
I disagree with a little bit of this.

First our economy is not in a death spiral. It is increasing, even locally, just at a small pace that isn't enough to close the unemployment gap that exists or producing enough jobs for everyone here + those still continuing to move here. We still have good geographic positions, good connections, and alot of wealth here. 2007 was a death-spiral.

I don't think you're giving enough credit to cities on the southeastern side of I-85 in Gwinnett. I'm not sure how familiar you are with the whole area.

Lawrenceville has the best downtown in Gwinnett hands down. With the building of The Sugarloaf extension and the new limited-access conversation of 316 and the new university, I think the community will do well over time. It will remove alot of through traffic and make it more accessible to more places.

The main issue they will need to overcome is they have a rash of old apartments wrapping around the south edge of the city, but that is more of an existing issue...not something continuing to get worse.

Lilburn... eh.. split.. that depends what your calling lilburn. The areas north have been very stagnant. Lots of old large lot ranch homes, townhomes, and apartments. It is rapidly becoming a Hispanic community, but it is mostly the area north of Lilburn. The area south of the CSX tracks is a completely different story. The Parkview- Brookwood corridor is mostly single-family homes. Homes that have good value. The infill neighborhoods are building again. They no longer are building the $600,000-$900,000 they were before 2007, but they are building a healthy $350,000-$500,000 new homes. In my area most of the foreclosed homes have been bought. There are still a few new foreclosures here and there, but they seem to be bought up quickly now.
This area will stay strong and grow in value. Good schools, good housing stock, but great road connections. US78 in Gwinnett (the non-freeway part) backs up in parts, but the freeway part to 285 doesn't. There isn't much advantage for me to locate near Scott Blvd or Clarkston or just inside Gwinnett. We also have better access to the I-85 corridor jobs and Peachtree Corners. We hit bottom and we are recovering. Just north of here in the Brookwood district Ronald Reagan Pkwy makes this a key nice suburban area for people who work in the I-85 corridor, but want to be away from all the apartments, townhomes, decaying retail areas. This corridor will hold strong.

Grayson is at the edge of this corridor. It will be partially held up by its' access to Ronald Reagan + its access to the new Sugarloaf extension. It will be be fine, but it will also be a low-density community. It won't be some hotspot where people are building on top of each other.

Snelleville - Split decision. The area north is nice. Access to high-quality retail, Sugarloaf, and Ronald Reagan. It is partially part of the Brookwood area I mentioned above. However the area further south is a different story. It is starting to get too far away from Ronald Reagan and the commute down the full length of US78 in Gwinnett adds some major commute time. I don't see this area doing too well. More people would rather be in the Brookwood district or even the Grayson area.

The whole area south of US 78 is further away from Gwinnett's core job base and has long commutes to Atlanta. The property values tend to be lower than those further north of US78 and the school districts are not as prized.
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Old 07-02-2012, 07:12 AM
 
Location: atlanta
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Originally Posted by ATLTJL View Post
Fair enough.

I'm not steadfast in which burbs are going to have rough times, just that some are going to have much harder times than others.

And I see Suwanee, Johns Creek, and Alpharetta as fairly safe.

I'm a little more concerned about my own town of Duluth. I live very close to Johns Creek, so I have faith in my particular part of town, but the city limits include some sketchier areas. The city has worked very hard on the downtown, and while beautiful, it is far from vibrant with thriving businesses yet. So I think it could ultimately really go either way. Especially when more people start figuring out that the nicest parts of what was once considered Duluth are now actually Johns Creek and/or unincorporated Forsyth county. I always try to remind people that Gwinnett Place is not actually part of Duluth. But I do worry overall about the future of Duluth.
i would be worried about johns creek to be frank. although it's very expensive and trendy now, there isn't a real downtown area that people will gather to. the mcmansions of today will be undesirable as the cheap methods used to construct them will begin to show with time. the shopping centres that are thriving today will look like the older shopping centres in the closer in suburbs look today: crappy and old. honestly what i predict will happen is that the core downtown areas of these suburbs will survive and thrive, and the suburban sprawl surrounding them will begin to decay.
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Old 07-02-2012, 08:20 AM
 
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Originally Posted by bryantm3 View Post
i would be worried about johns creek to be frank. although it's very expensive and trendy now, there isn't a real downtown area that people will gather to. the mcmansions of today will be undesirable as the cheap methods used to construct them will begin to show with time. the shopping centres that are thriving today will look like the older shopping centres in the closer in suburbs look today: crappy and old. honestly what i predict will happen is that the core downtown areas of these suburbs will survive and thrive, and the suburban sprawl surrounding them will begin to decay.
No. Johns Creek will become like East Cobb--and East Cobb has become better with age.

No downtown. Luckily beautiful. Lots of homes built during a certain time-period. Affluent.
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Old 07-02-2012, 08:26 AM
 
Location: Atlanta, GA
1,052 posts, read 1,316,039 times
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Originally Posted by bryantm3 View Post
i would be worried about johns creek to be frank. although it's very expensive and trendy now, there isn't a real downtown area that people will gather to. the mcmansions of today will be undesirable as the cheap methods used to construct them will begin to show with time. the shopping centres that are thriving today will look like the older shopping centres in the closer in suburbs look today: crappy and old. honestly what i predict will happen is that the core downtown areas of these suburbs will survive and thrive, and the suburban sprawl surrounding them will begin to decay.
Couldn't give you anymore rep points.

But perfect post.

Look in Johns Creek and you will see the older homes sit on the market. The Georgians and faux French chateaus are sitting on the market. But the trendy faux rustic McMansions are selling. It is a very trendy place. And like I have said before so many people buy big houses for great prices but forget what it would cost to furnish. To decorate a high end 5k sq. ft. house you are talking at least 500k(and that is not even top of the line high end). And the other problem is in 10-15 years they cannot afford the renovations and monthly mortgage payment. That is why so many of the million dollar and up houses there generally need a lot of work.
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Old 07-02-2012, 12:14 PM
 
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the shopping centres that are thriving today will look like the older shopping centres in the closer in suburbs look today: crappy and old.
I disagree because Johns Creek instituted stringent architectural standards for their buildings. The older centers in the closer in suburbs were just built with the fastest and easiest means available at the time. They may look older now than before, but the fact is, they ALWAYS looked crappy.

Most buildings in Johns Creek have stone fronts or other architectural features that first, are more attractive, and second, age much better and will take a much longer time to start looking old. They may never need updating as the designs are more timeless, not the older closer in 'burbs that now are starting to look so 70s or 80s. Johns Creek chose designs that probably won't look "so 2012" in 20 years, they will still look fine.

There is also just so much wealth. Before Johns Creek can go in the crapper, Country Club of the South has to go down. Then St. Ives. Then Atlanta Athletic Club. And the list goes one. Bottom line: ain't gonna happen.

If you think that Johns Creek is going to go downhill, you are really deluding yourself with some other kind of agenda. You don't have to like it, but it's not going down in our lifetimes. It's probably the single most secure suburb the city has. So much would have to go wrong for Johns Creek to collapse, and there are hundreds of other places that would collapse first.

I also don't know why you are assuming the mcmansions were constructed poorly. I haven't been inside too many of them, but the ones I have been in are all made of quality materials and seem to have used sound workmanship. I'm sure there are some shoddy ones, and I don't know, it may even be the majority....but I can tell you that the ones I have seen are fairly decent quality. How many of them have you actually been in before you make a statement like that?
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