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ATLANTA-Ten-ton construction cranes will be gracing the city skyline by year end as a new wave of commercial construction gets under way in the metro area, local brokers and developers confirm for GlobeSt.com. The estimated aggregate value of at least five new projects is more than $200 million.

Area brokers tell GlobeSt.com the newest venture involves locally based Novare Group and Wood Partners who plan a December ground breaking on a 27-story, retail-oriented condominium tower on the 1.8-acre site of the former Atlanta Cabana Motor Hotel in Midtown.

Novare-Woods’ joint venture partners are developer George Rohrig and his associates, Charlie and Robin Loudermilk. Rohrig-Loudermilk owned the former Cabana Motor Hotel at Peachtree and Seventh Streets.

The newest Novare-Woods venture follows the developers’ ground breaking last week of a 21-story apartment complex expected to open by year end 2004 on Pharr Road in the affluent Buckhead district.

Also in Buckhead, eight miles from Downtown Atlanta, are locally based Regent Partners and privately owned Hanover Co. of Houston who are racing to complete a total 600 apartment units at an estimated aggregate development cost of $100 million, or about $166,666 per unit, as GlobeSt.com previously reported.

Area brokers tell GlobeSt.com Novare-Woods is also rumored to be negotiating in the purchase of a prime 6.7-acre Downtown site for a new office and condo community. The site covers three city blocks from Williams Street to MARTA’s Civic Center station on West Peachtree Street. Brokers tell GlobeSt.com the asking price for the dirt is an estimated $20 million, or about $2.98 million per acre ($68.53 per sf), one of the highest land tags in recent city real estate annals.

Spotting a niche in office condominium demand, The Griffin Co. of Atlanta plans to break ground in first quarter 2004 on a $20 million, 145,000-sf, 11-story building between Midtown and Buckhead, as GlobeSt.com previously reported. Pre-sale prices of the units start at $235 per sf. Complete floors total 15,000 sf, making the estimated pre-sale price of a full floor $3.53 million.

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