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ATLANTA-Buying land at the right price nearly always spells success for a project and Aldi International thinks it has done just that with an estimated $3 million purchase of an 80-acre tract about 30 miles northeast of Downtown. The Germany-based global grocer plans to break ground in summer 2004 on a 450,000-sf distribution center, its first in the Southeast at the site.

The local office of Lincoln Property Co., which found the dirt in tiny Jefferson (Pop. 2,002) for Aldi after an 18-month search, declined to disclose the purchase price. But area industrial real estate brokers familiar with this submarket tell GlobeSt.com the contract price was for about $38,000 per acre.

The land near Interstate 85 in the northeast submarket was acquired from Exit 140 LLC, a local partnership headed by Doug Wilkerson. The distribution center will support 58 Aldi stores in the metropolitan area, according to Lincoln. Aldi’s US headquarters are in Chicago.

Representing Aldi in its land search were Julian Brown of Lincoln and Darren Woods of The Providence Group of Charlotte, NC.

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