Midtown’s Colony Square earns an elite platinum rating from WiredScore
Begun in the late 1960s, Colony Square, at the corner of 14th Street and Peachtree streets, had all the bells and whistles of a modern, mixed-use development. But eventually, those features found themselves in need of an upgrade, which is exactly what North American Properties (NAP) is providing.
Mark Toro, managing partner of NAP, says that he and his wife had lived around the corner from Colony Square for 10 years. “Almost daily, I would walk past the property, imagining its potential,” says Toro. “Colony Square has the highest pedestrian count in the city, outside of Georgia Tech’s campus. The area is highly accessible, but it’s time to open the development up to the street, inviting the community in, and creating street-level energy throughout the property.”
The reimagined design has a new ‘urbane’ brand, a softer, more approachable retail space and the latest in technology infrastructure. WiredScore has given Colony Square’s 100 and 400 buildings its highest platinum rating, making it best-in-class for internet service, telecom infrastructure, ease of installation and capacity. Only 1180 Peachtree and Ponce City Market also hold that rating in the area.
“The Wired Certified Platinum rating assures tenants that our buildings can meet and exceed their technology needs and future-proof their businesses,” says Toro. NAP plans to open the reimagined Colony Square in July 2018, 50 years after its groundbreaking.
Resting Place Revamp
Thanks to a $300,000 grant from The Rich Foundation, Oakland Cemetery’s Jewish Hill gets a needed restoration.
Neale Nickels, director of preservation at Oakland Cemetery, hopes to someday work himself out of a job and to see the 48 acres of Oakland Cemetery fully restored. The Rich Foundation has been helping him do it. Foundation grants have helped restore the original Jewish section and the Jewish Flats, which the Hebrew Benevolent Congregation acquired in the late 1870s. In August, The Rich Foundation awarded the Historic Oakland Foundation a $300,000 grant to restore the Jewish Hill section.
He plans a complete restoration of the hardscape. “No stone will be left unturned, so to speak,” says Nickels. Period-appropriate landscaping and interpretive elements will complete the project. “One of the most important components of preservation is education. My job is more than rebuilding walls; it’s sharing the stories of the people buried here,” he says. Many of those buried in Jewish Hill played a significant role in Atlanta’s early history, including members of the Rich family who founded Rich’s Department Store in 1943.
“We strive to be a beacon for Atlanta’s preservation, both in caring for the grounds and in getting the stories out,” says Nichols. The Historic Oakland Foundation offers general and topic specific historic tours and will soon unveil a phone app for a self-guided walking tour.
STORIES: Laura Raines