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Old 12-15-2020, 03:26 PM
 
508 posts, read 197,030 times
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After years of urging from frustrated residents and business leaders, Gwinnett County commissioners on Tuesday agreed to buy the struggling Gwinnett Place Mall.

The mall, which had long been an eyesore in the county as businesses left, will be purchased by the county for $23 million. The seller is Moonbeam Capital, which had promised improvements upon buying the mall in 2013, but never delivered them.

Closing will be in 90 days. The county’s Urban Redevelopment Agency made the purchase, which includes 39 acres of mall property. The anchor tenants will continue to own their property.

https://www.ajc.com/news/atlanta-new...NZRDTOS5VU3LE/
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Old 12-15-2020, 03:42 PM
 
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Thank goodness!!!!

Though I haven't been that thrilled by what county officials have floated over the years of doing with the mall, it's gotta be better than what Moonbeam has done.
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Old 12-15-2020, 03:50 PM
 
523 posts, read 630,690 times
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Awesome!
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Old 12-15-2020, 04:38 PM
 
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Just read this. Hope they are successful...it’s just a couple of miles away from me, so would be great to have some good stuff there. The problem is defining what is good stuff? Seems like the county doesn’t yet know. I don’t think it’s just that they aren’t releasing plans t9 the public...they aren’t finalizing specifics because there is going to be a bunch of new commissioners and they are letting them decide. Seems like the mall structure will be left since they aren’t buying the Macy’s space or Megamart.
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Old 12-15-2020, 07:12 PM
 
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IKEA
Wegman's
A cinema focused on East Asian and South Asian films.
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Old 12-15-2020, 07:57 PM
 
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Quote:
A cinema focused on East Asian and South Asian films.
This is exactly the kind of dumb idea I wouldn't put past the county, but would do nothing to revitalize the area.

I remember how excited they were Megamart was coming, boy it was going to help save the mall! All it did was make the lower level smell bad. And Megamart doesn't even use its top 2 floors.

I think we need to be thinking about what is actually going to elevate the mall, not just make people come visit if those visits don't make it something better than it is today. That's not to say it can't have an international flavor, but you have to make it higher end than what is there currently.
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Old 12-15-2020, 09:28 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
7,346 posts, read 8,979,149 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzcat22 View Post
Just read this. Hope they are successful...it’s just a couple of miles away from me, so would be great to have some good stuff there. The problem is defining what is good stuff? Seems like the county doesn’t yet know. I don’t think it’s just that they aren’t releasing plans t9 the public...they aren’t finalizing specifics because there is going to be a bunch of new commissioners and they are letting them decide. Seems like the mall structure will be left since they aren’t buying the Macy’s space or Megamart.
I suspect they bought this without immediate firm plans.

I suspect that Moonbeam was putting it on the market to sell and they had to make a somewhat time-limited decision to become the buyer or risk another land holding company with no real plans to invest into the property buying it. They've been pretty frustrated with Moonbeam. Gwinnett Co. has lost a great deal in potential property tax revenue on the site over the years, while it has dragged down values on adjacent properties.

Their best long-term strategy is to seek a master developers that will submit bids & Plans to use the land for other purposes, that may or may not incorporate the existing building into the redevelopment of the site. The best master developer might only develop a core area of the site and create parcels that can attracted other developments, like modern apartments or a single office building and we can get many companies in on the plan and not one single big one.

The strategy for the county on this isn't making money and they should be open to losing a little bit of money on this and not act like a developer themselves. What they really need is something to change the use of the land in a way that will bring land values of the parcel back up and increase land values of adjacent land. That has been the real problem with these long-term land holding companies sitting on potentially valuable well-connected properties is they drive the property value down to lower taxes while they wait to sell the land at the peak of the next economic development cycle for the area. The problem is the county loses a ton of money in potential property tax receipts.

That should be the key goal is getting the property to a place where it is economically viable again and is taxed at normal rates. This will give them more say in picking a developer/future property owner with a plan and assets to do -something- with it.

Admittedly, I don't want the county to sink too much taxpayer money into something that isn't guaranteed to net returns for the county in the short and medium run.

I know one of the vacant anchor parcels is owned by a national real estate company that focuses on the development of apartments and condos and when Moonbeam said they were going invest into the site, they were onboard with developing with them. The problem they face is timing. Most people don't want to live on top of an abandoned mall.

In 1999 it appraised for $112m. In 2007 it was bought for $68m, the bank forecloses on it and in 2013 Moonbeam buys it from the bank for just $13.5m. Since then it's appraisal has dropped to $6.5m, partly from Moonbeam not making it -economically viable-, so they can claim the land doesn't have much economic function and hold onto the property with less tax.

Either way the county can only collect taxes every year for it appraised at $6.5m and the appraisals of adjacent properties drop with it.

The county is really after this becoming something that is taxable again and has a positive affect on adjacent property values. There are auto sales lots around the corner that have similar acreage that appraise for $14m. The site has been depressed so much, they know it wouldn't take much to make it be a better taxable asset again, so even a moderate loss on reselling the site can be made up with several years of tax receipts.

For comparison, Sugarloaf Mills appraises for $75m and Mall of Georgia appraises for $291m. The Forum appraises for $103m. The Shoppes at Web Ginn (with associated smaller parcels) appraises at $61m (Note: Forum and Shoppes include anchors; Sugarloaf Mills includes anchors; this total does not include 4 anchor sites at MoG and does not include all anchors at Gwinnett Place).


Just one of the 6 story office buildings across Satellite appraises for $15m on 1/4 the acreage (150,000 sq ft). The apartments they developed next to Sugarloaf Mills appraises for $62m on 1/4 of the acreage of the mall. The new apartments in downtown Duluth at appraised at $82m on 1/4 the acreage. Even most older apartment complexes around the Gwinnett Place Mall area appraise anywhere between $20m to $50m.


At the most general level, What county doesn't want to do is rush it so we end up with something that can only be moderately appraised and not meet its real potential in perpetuity and doesn't help the whole area be better. However, they also don't want to end up with it for a long time and try to only make it a 'perfect' development. They want to make it a tax-earning site again. The longer they hold onto it, the longer the county gets nothing from this investment via property and sales tax receipts.


I'm curious if Moonbeam had any other offers on the table. I'm also curious if Moonbeam was planning on sitting on the land longer, if they couldn't get this much for it.
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Old 12-15-2020, 09:29 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
7,346 posts, read 8,979,149 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLTJL View Post
This is exactly the kind of dumb idea I wouldn't put past the county, but would do nothing to revitalize the area.

I remember how excited they were Megamart was coming, boy it was going to help save the mall! All it did was make the lower level smell bad. And Megamart doesn't even use its top 2 floors.

I think we need to be thinking about what is actually going to elevate the mall, not just make people come visit if those visits don't make it something better than it is today. That's not to say it can't have an international flavor, but you have to make it higher end than what is there currently.
Geez dude... a bit harsh.

Much better than any idea you brought to the table.

Aries is probably one of our most awesome posters here.
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Old 12-15-2020, 09:50 PM
 
9,008 posts, read 11,992,896 times
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Quote:
Much better than any idea you brought to the table.
I've had tons of great ideas for this mall posted over the years, but I don't feel like searching for them or retyping them.

But just to keep it short and sweet, if you want an idea better than movie theater that shows south Asian films, I can do that right now:

Regular AMC or Regal movie theater.

That's not a slam on aries. I'm just sick of the notion that the only thing that can save this area is Asian businesses. Guess what? They're there already... and they haven't. Time to give something else a chance.
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Old 12-15-2020, 10:03 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
7,346 posts, read 8,979,149 times
Reputation: 5782
Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLTJL View Post
I've had tons of great ideas for this mall posted over the years, but I don't feel like searching for them or retyping them.

But just to keep it short and sweet, if you want an idea better than movie theater that shows south Asian films, I can do that right now:

Regular AMC or Regal movie theater.
I think you missed the point where you were being quite harsh, while bringing nothing of value to the conversation at the get-go. I don't care how good your idea is or isn't after-the-fact or what you might have mentioned in a past thread.
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