COLORBEARER OF ATHENS, GEORGIA LOCALLY OWNED SINCE 1987

Blog Topic: Business, Man

  • In the Loop: More Details on the Westclox Mixed-Use Development

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    Photo Credit: Studio BNA Architects

    A view of the proposed development facing east from above Newton Bridge Road. The amphitheater faces Dairy Pak Road to the south.

    The 35-acre General Time development on the long-vacant Westclox clock factory property off Newton Bridge Road would primarily serve permanent Athens residents as well as draw visitors from around the region, according to promotional materials released Monday.

    "This type of adaptive reuse model works so well in countless scenarios in metro Atlanta and around the Southeast," said Michael Dinerman, who is developing the project along with Jennifer Davidson. "We saw the old Westclox property as an opportunity to help pull together many needs of the Athens community in one strategically located district."

    Plans and renderings—available on the Athens-Clarke County website—show a brewery with a rooftop "tasting terrace," a "cycle cafe" along a stormwater detention pond and a "provisions market."

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  • In the Loop: Big Mixed-Use Development Planned for Former Athens Clock Factory

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    Photo Credit: Matt Clayton/Google

    A "super cool" 35-acre mixed-use development including a 3,000-seat music venue is planned for the the old Westclox plant off Newton Bridge Road, the Atlanta Business Chronicle reportedThursday.

    The project's developers, UGA graduate Michael Dinerman and Jennifer Davidson, have been eyeing the property for more than two years. Dinerman, an Atlanta real estate developer, said he has seen similar adaptive reuse projects in Atlanta and noticed that Athens lacks a large music venue.

    In addition to the music venue, they want to build about 100 apartments, "maker space" for craftspeople, retail space and three or four restaurants. Terrapin Brewery has also signed a long-term lease for warehouse space at the development, according to the Business Chronicle.

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  • In the Loop: Piedmont Athens Regional Is Planning a $171 Million Expansion

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    Photo Credit: Blake Aued

    Piedmont Athens Regional is planning a $171 million expansion that will add a seven-story tower and nearly a quarter of a million square feet to the Prince Avenue hospital, according to documents filed with the state Department of Community Health.

    Piedmont notified DCH last week that it intends to apply for a certificate of need to build an addition to the hospital and renovate other space.

    The project would mostly affect the front of the medical complex facing Prince Avenue, where the emergency room entrance is located. It would involve tearing down part of the Prince 1 tower (the oldest part of the hospital) and building a new seven-story tower in its place. A fourth story would be added to the Prince 2 tower, and it would be renovated as well.

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  • Grub Notes: Bain Mattox's Buvez Is Coming to Barber Street

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    The DOC building.

    With 1000 Faces vacating its spot in the DOC Building on Barber Street, across from the Habitat Re-Store, local entrepreneur/restaurateur/unofficial mayor of Normaltown Bain Mattox saw an opportunity in the space. His newest project, Buvez, should open there around March, with coffee, drinks, snacks and light breakfast, lunch and dinner.

    Mattox's wife, Amanda Kapousouz, said, "In an effort to continue the great community vibe started by our friends over at 1000 Faces and bring in ideas we are inspired by in other areas of the country, we are looking to open a space in the spirit of what Bain knows best: drinks! Hence, the name: buvez [which means 'drink' in French]!"

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  • Grub Notes: Akademia Brewpub Strikes Deal With Distributors

    Akademia Brewing Co.'s beers will soon be available at on draft at other restaurants, as well as bars and package stores, in Athens and Atlanta after the local brewpub partnered with Georgia distribution company Modern Hops.

    The first local locations where Akademia's beer will be sold are Catch-22 Gastropub, Blue Sky Bar and the growler shops at both Five Points Bottle Shop locations. By the end of the year, Akademia hopes to branch out throughout Athens and Oconee County, metro Atlanta, Augusta and Savannah, Akademia owner Matt Casey said a news release.

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  • In the Loop: Junkman's Daughter's Brother Is Closing Again

     

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    Photo Credit: Jessica Silverman

    Lovers of funky tapestries and eclectic novelties will be saddened to hear Junkman’s Daughter’s Brother, located on West Broad Street, is officially closing as soon as the last of the merchandise sells.

    However, it’s not a retirement or sudden urge to relocate that’s shutting down the shop—it’s that rent is going by 56 percent. Owner Mark Gavron said no one approached him with an opportunity to re-sign his lease. One day, he said, a man came in and casually asked if Gavron was moving locations, since he’d seen the building was available on Craigslist. Gavron said this was the first he had heard of the news.  

    “It’s OK, it just puts me a year ahead of my planned retirement,” he said.

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  • Grub Notes: Koko Buni Is Back and More Athens Beer News

    One of Creature Comforts' most popular seasonals, Koko Buni, is back in cans and on draft as of Tuesday.

    The well-balanced milk porter (6.5% ABV) brewed with toasted coconut, Ecuadorian cocoa nibs from Condor Chocolates and an Ethiopian coffee blend from 1000 Faces can be, like many of Creature Comforts' special releases, notoriously hard to find, so snatch some up if you see any.

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  • In the Loop: Vote to End Net Neutrality Scheduled for Today

     

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    Photo Credit: Jessica Silverman

    Indivisible District 10 members gathered outside an Athens Verizon store Dec. 7 to protest the end of net neutrality.

    Dozens of protesters braved wintry weather last week to demonstrate in front of a local Verizon store against the rollback of Obama-era net neutrality laws, joining thousands of others at more than 700 similar demonstrations across the country.  

    Today, a coalition of organizations, including Free Press, Center for Media Justice, Color of Change and other groups are demonstrating in front of Federal Communications Commission offices in Washington, DC immediately prior to a scheduled FCC vote to on ending net neutrality.

    Toni Reed, a co-chair of the political group Indivisible Georgia District 10, said that the effort would make “access to the internet… based on what you can afford. Deregulation will only benefit the wealthy and large corporations.”

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  • Grub Notes: The Lil' Ice Cream Dude Is Getting His Own Store

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    Photo Credit: file

    Beau Shell in 2014.

    Unlike most kids, who tend to be interested in something for about five minutes after you've paid for it, Beau Shell (aka the Lil' Ice Cream Dude) has spent the past five-and-a-half years building his small business.

    He started off with a little cart, out of which he sold popsicles and frozen novelties at events around town, eventually becoming the youngest member of the Athens Chamber of Commerce. More recently, he upgraded to a heavy-duty food-truck-style trailer after a successful crowd-funding campaign. He works nearly every weekend in the hot months and fairly frequently even in the cold ones. He's also only 13 years old.

    On Small Business Saturday, he'll open Cool World, a proper brick-and-mortar store, in the Shops of Ansonborough, on Gaines School Road on the Eastside.

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  • In the Loop: Commission Considers Deal to Sell Parking Lot to Hotel Indigo

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    The Athens-Clarke County Commission will vote tonight on a deal to sell Strong Street and a city-owned parking lot between Strong and Dougherty Street to Hotel Indigo for a development that will include hotel rooms and office space.

    The deal calls for ACC to sell the property to Athens Hospitality Holdings LLC, the company that owns Hotel Indigo, for $3 million. Athens Hospitality Holdings would then build a new five-story development on the property that would include 45 hotel rooms; office space for the ACC Economic Development Department; 8,000 square feet of meeting and event space; 7,000 square feet of coworking space where entrepreneurs and startups could rent desks, offices and conference rooms; a street-level restaurant; a rooftop bar and 60 underground parking spots. Strong Street would be closed and converted into a courtyard.

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