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ATLANTA-Banking on the buying power of several surrounding affluent metro Atlanta suburbs, locally based Workco Development has broken ground on Abbotts Bridge Crossing, a planned 45,000-sf, $7.5 million specialty retail center in Duluth, GA, the second largest city in Gwinnett County.

The property is at 3170 Peachtree Industrial Blvd. and Abbotts Bridge Road. Workman & Co., the 28-year-old parent of Workco Development, will lease and manage the property. Average asking rent is $23 per sf.

The company’s prepared statement says it is confident the project will succeed, largely due to demographic factors that show the average annual household income is $126,503 within a five-mile radius. More than 75% of the area’s housing is owner-occupied. And U.S. Census data projects a 21% increase in the area’s population from 2002 to 2007.

“Combine the location with the surrounding area’s demographics, and this is a can’t-miss property,” says Cara Workman, vice president of development at Workman & Co. “We expect to complete development and leaseup at Abbotts Bridge by fall 2003, just in time for the holiday shopping season.” Howard and Honey Workman preside over the leasing, managment, brokerage and investment sides of the company.

Recently relocated from New York to take over a part of the family’s Atlanta business, Workman tells GlobeSt.com there is no pre-leasing yet but “we are negotiating with several different tenants now.”

The seven-acre center will have on-site parking for 182 vehicles. The developer is offering tenants 4.53 parking spaces for every 1,000 sf leased. Available space will range from 1,330 sf to 13,220 sf with 14-foot ceilings in the front and 11-foot ceilings in the rear. Also available is a 3,500-sf outparcel on a pad ready for development.

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