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ATLANTA-Opus South Corp. has relocated its regional headquarters from suburban Alpharetta to the Sovereign building in Buckhead. The development firm’s now solidified executive team will be located a newly leased 14,000 square feet space at 3344 Peachtree St. in Northern Atlanta. Terms of the lease were not disclosed.

“We feel that Buckhead is the heart of the commercial real estate market as it relates to Atlanta and the Southeast,” Brian Linnihan, vice president of sales and finance, tells GlobeSt.com. “If you look at the companies we do business with, including numerous brokerages, they’re all located here and it gives us an opportunity to be closer to the real estate professionals we interact with every day.”

A move to Buckhead has been in the works for the last 12 to 15 months, says Linnihan, about the same time frame that the new executive team for the corporate office was taking shape with the hire of Hunter Barrier, Opus South president and CEO who oversees operations at the Atlanta and five Florida offices. Martin McFarland, VP of the Atlanta office and R. Duane Wood, VP of industrial development were on board with the firm before the remainder of the team was compiled over the last year. That team consists of Linnihan, Kevin Polston, VP of retail development, Anne Marie Solberg, VP general counsel, Howard Zoromsky, senior VP of construction and most recently hired John Bell, VP of multifamily development, Stephanie Lipp, director of retail leasing and Jeff Royce, director of real estate.

“The commercial real estate business is going to be a lot different over the next two to three years and hiring at the executive level was part of our strategy to make sure we have the right team in place,” says Linnihan. “Opportunities might be scare, but we want to be able to capitalize on them once the market does turn. We don’t know that bottom has hit yet, but we have our eyes on a bunch of sites so our goal is to be there once the prices have dipped down to where there is enough distress to buy.”

Part of Opus South’s strategy is to also be more active in the Carolinas and Tennessee, while continuing projects under way in Georgia and Florida. The firm currently owns 1.5 million square feet in the Atlanta Metropolitan area, including its biggest project, Terraces at Suwanee Gateway, a recently completed 125,000-square-foot speculative office building. The structure is the first phase of a plan that includes two more similar buildings, 560 residences and 350,000-square-feet of retail on the site. The start date of the next phases of development at Suwanee will depend upon market demand, Linnihan reports.

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