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(Carl Cronan is editor of Real EstateFlorida.)

ATLANTA-Crescent Resources LLC is moving forward with construction on two distinctly different commercial projects roughly 25 miles apart within the city�s metropolitan area. Shiloh 400 Business Center is being built along Georgia 400 at McFarland Road in Alpharetta, while Phipps Tower is under way at Peachtree and Lenox Roads in Buckhead.

Development partners are involved in each of the projects, making things easier moving forward in the current shaky economy. Company executives believe both projects meet the needs of industrial and office tenants in their respective parts of town.

�Our objective is to build high-quality real estate that meets the needs of the marketplace as we see it,� Patrick Henry, Crescent senior vice president and chief development officer in Atlanta, tells GlobeSt.com. �We are very confident in the Atlanta market. We�re also very cautious as to the ramifications of a weak economy. The bellwether for our business is job growth.�

Shiloh 400, a 240,000-sf distribution park with three buildings on 18 acres, is being built in partnership with Dallas-based Cobalt Capital Partners at an estimated cost of approximately $20 million. Henry noted that the partnership acquired the property earlier this year, while most of Crescent projects are on sites that have been held a while longer before they are developed.

GlobeSt.com reported in February that Cobalt Capital tapped into a $410-million REIT to fund Shiloh 400 as part of a group of speculative industrial projects totaling five million sf over the next three years. Other projects are being developed in Minnesota and Texas.

Phipps Tower, a 20-story class A office structure totaling 486,000 sf, is being built in a $175-million joint venture with Manulife Financial. Besides being linked to the prestigious Phipps Plaza project and its proximity to the Ritz-Carlton Buckhead hotel, the building intends to seek Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification by the US Green Building Council.

Crescent executives say they are talking with several possible tenants at Phipps Tower, identifying more than 500,000 sf of qualified prospects and another two million sf of leases expiring by the time it opens in early 2010. �The market is very active right now,� says John S. Bell, the building�s leasing director.

Similarly, Crescent believes Shiloh 400 will appeal to industrial tenants seeking distribution or light-industrial space with high visibility in a growing segment of the Atlanta metropolitan area. In addition to these two projects, Crescent is also developing Corporate Centre at Deerfield, a two-building, 264,000-sf office project at Windward Parkway and Georgia 400.

Henry notes that the projects now under construction should be ready to open by the time the national economy returns to recovery mode. �We think this is a fabulous time to build,� he says. �We�re very confident in their ultimate success.�

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