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ironchapman

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Well, from just reading the Augusta Chronicle, three major developers have just announced that they will be developing an 800,000 square foot, open-air, up-scale "Lifestyle Center" On Riverwatch PKWY near I-20 (behind Comcast), which will plan to include 91-100 fashion related stores (hopefully another Old Navy) and yes ANOTHER 18 screen movie theater, like AUG doesn't already have enough with our 4 other large movie theaters. Large Anchor stores such as Dillards and Belk (making an Augusta comeback) have also been announced, as well as including some restaurants.

The proposed groundbreaking will be around March 2006, with completion around Fall 2007.

Trivial Fact: One of the developers of this project, Philipps Stevens, is best credited for the redevelopment of Phipp's Plaza in ATL.

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No, the crazy thing about this is that apparently, Dillards, wants to keep both stores even though they're like a mile apart. They actually think Augusta can "sustain" them ALL (yeah right), so we'll have like THREE Dillards all within 5 miles or so of each other.

But what about stores like Parisian, that has stores in Metro ATL and in Macon. Well, let me hush about that, cause they'll probably be the next ones to make an announcement.

There's a good news video on this shopping center along with pictures on all Augusta's News stations. WRDW NEWS 12, WAGT NEWS 26, WJBF NEWS 6. Just look for the new shopping center stories, they'll probably be real easy to find for at least a couple of days or weeks even.

I want to try to actually post some of them here if I can ever find any of the developer's websites. But this really is gonna be big for AUG, I guess we're finally getting another "mall", but I still feel bad about Regency Mall though, something needs to be there so bad. The central city is still stugglin'.

Oh and another story one might find interesting on the news sites is "The Restaurant chain" story, which mentions AUG's First Starbucks (Yes, An actual Starbucks in Augusta, who would of thought), and a possible Ruby Tuesday in South Augusta, yay for the Southside, Finally. :)

OH and the name of this new center is going to be deemed: Villages at Riverwatch

Edited by DaGABoyStinger
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With all the growth in Augusta and the growth on Lake Oconee, why is there no talk of a commuter rail between Atlanta and Augusta. There could be stops in Downtown Atlanta, Lithonia, Conyers, Covington, Buckhead (not the one in Atlanta), Madison, Greensboro, Crawfodville, Thomson and then on to Augusta. That would be really nice. There could be urban nodes around the station, plus it could spark development in parts of Georgia that are in need of new development.

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that's great news for augusta, i hope they somehow incorporate the canal into this "villiage." maybe some walks and pedestrian bridges and even docks for paddleboats or canoes.

as far as the idea for a commuter line from atl to aug, it makes too much sense that i don't see how anyone will get it done. who would fund it? gadot, they are too busy adding lanes and maintaining the existing highway. i would love for someone to really initiate something like the rail, and i am certain that if it was built, they all would come.

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Further news regarding the new "mall":

The Chronicle reported today that there has been no comment on the future status of the National Hills and Augusta Mall Dillards. I wouldn't be surprised if the National Hills one is closed :(

Also, the Belk that is opening will be replacing the one in North Augusta, creating another empty big box near the old Wal-Mart...

One thing is certain, this development will put a hit on Augusta Mall as well as probably close a few stores in Augusta Exchange. Also, I think this will lessen the chances of seeing a new movie theatre elsewhere in the metro where its needed more (ie Aiken)... The Aiken Mall cinema is one of the worst first-run theatres that can be found these days...

I'm definately glad to see new growth in Richmond County, but I just can't help feeling like something more responsible could go in on this prime block of riverfront land. Nothing would make me happier than seeing a new-urbanist village going in there, but it doesn't look like thats in the cards.

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The renovation of the Senior Citizen Building:  Status- Complete

The New Multi-Purpose Building:  Status-Underconstruction

Repaving of many city streets:  Status-Underway

~Me personally: I am working on getting a traffic light for our city, at the intersection of US Highway 82 and GA Highway `135 South.  If any of you have any tips on helping me accomplish this, please give them to me.~

THANKS

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Two New Projects:

The renovation of the Senior Citizen Building: Status- Complete

The New Multi-Purpose Building: Status-Underconstruction

Repaving of many city streets: Status-Underway

*Putting speed bumps on streets: Status-Underway

*Pioneer Park Picnic Shelter: Status-Underconstruction

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Didn't the Augusta area at one time have like 4 Dillards. The Augusta Mall, National Hills, North Augusta and Daniel Village. I think when the converted JB Whites to Dillards there were. Not 100 percent sure on that though. Hopefully the new Lifestyle Center will be a little more upscale than the Augusta Mall, so as not to totally put it out. Then the city would have two dead malls on its hands. I dont think that will happen since Macys, Sears and JC Penneys are all staples in the metro area.

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I don't remember the exact population estimate, but the metro has approximately 515,000 people, making it the clear (but distant) #2 behind Atlanta.

There's currently only 2 "malls" in the Augusta area. Those are the Aiken Mall and the Augusta Mall. The Regency mall closed years ago. This new lifestyle center would be the 3rd "mall." The shopping centers referenced in socaguy's post are mostly strip malls.

What we do have (and are slowly losing) is several freestanding department stores that are not part of an enclosed mall. That's quite a rarity these days, but I think those store's days are numbered. The malls are just going to get more traffic/business than freestanding stores, unfortunately.

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And I was wrong about the Dillards being in Daniel Village. I dont think there was ever one there. Anyone know?

At one point Augusta metro area did have 4 malls. About 12-13 years ago when the Regency Mall was still open (but struggling), the Aiken Mall was just built, the Augusta Mall, and the Mall at Port Royal. Does anyone remember that place? I used to love it because they had a bonsai store in it. It was anchored by Colettes department store, based in France. The Mall was TOO upscale for Augusta, particularly for Downtown then, so it closed and the Science Museum took its' place.

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... and the Mall at Port Royal.  Does anyone remember that place?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Wow, I've never heard of that. I guess I was too young. I did wonder what was there before they created Fort Discovery. That would be awesome if Augusta still had shopping on the Riverwalk...

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Yeah, I remember the Port Royal quite well actually. But I remember only going there during a christmas time field trip when we decorated our own christmas cookies with "Mrs. Claus". I don't remember it being as "upscale" but thinking back on it I supposed it was, there was nice expensive looking stuff in there.

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It was a 2 level mall with about 60 shops in it at its height. Mostly a specialty Mall like the Galleria was in Atlanta. Not really that upscale, it had stores like Chico's and things like that but the department store was really nice, (Collettes). It probably would have done better out in Evans or even in Summerville but that was before Downtown became relatively popular again.

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does the "blue moon salloon" ring a bell. i remember that place had some of the worst local tv commercials.

it's sad that the port royal development did so poorly. i think it was a great idea, just a little bit ahead of its time. if something like that were done today, it might just make it.

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Regarding the new Marshall sqare development in Evans (outside Augusta), it is still a go, they are just waiting on environmental studies to be finished. The real estate guy said it would mainly be 3 floor condos and offices around the smaller scaled, ped-friendly Lifestyle center. One thing that he told me was that Evans wanted the area to be developed with very high-densisty.

So, including the Hammonds ferry development in N. Augusta there will be two relatively nice new urbanist-Lifestyle communities underway in Augusta soon, (I think HF is already under construction). Add the new Mega Lifestyle center at Riverwatch and Augusta seems to be adding loads of new, relatively cool projects.

On another note...does anyone know what they are building on Walton way (close to DT) near the Colesium and Piccadilly cafeteria? They have two lots, almost across from each other that have been cleared and something is about to go up. I had heard a Hampton Inn would be on one of those sites but thats been years ago. Would be nice area for a new mid-rise hotel of some sort.

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As far as I know, and according to what I read in the AUG Chronicle this past week, they are building a new kind of 80 bed, Rehab Hospital, that will specialize in more intense kinds of therepy, but this is close to 15th st. next door to Eckards around Chafee Ave. The site will be Three acres and I believe will be about 4 or 5 stories high, I have to reread that article to be totally exact on the details. But that's the only development that I know of going on on Walton Way.

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As far as I know, and according to what I read in the AUG Chronicle this past week, they are building a new kind of 80 bed, Rehab Hospital, that will specialize in more intense kinds of therepy, but this is close to 15th st. next door to Eckards around Chafee Ave.  The site will be Three acres and I believe will be about 4 or 5 stories high, I have to reread that article to be totally exact on the details.  But that's the only development that I know of going on on Walton Way.

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Thanks DaGABoy, I just read the article it was actually in yesterdays AC. Looks like it will only be 3 floors (Blah) and 67,000 sq. feet. From the map it looks like it will be on the North side of the street. There is another plot of land right across from that (on the south side of the street) which has been cleared away too. Im glad to see the Med-district densifying though. Walton Way could be a really cool urban street (as well as Laney Walker Boulevard.)

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I don't know if it's been posted here already or not, but Macon will be building a new downtown hotel soon. The hotel will be comparable in size (and number of rooms) to the current Crowne Plaza Hotel across the river. The hotel is planned to be an addition to the Macon Centreplex/Coliseum Complex. According to the city, Macon's convention center currently doesn't have an attached hotel and a new hotel will make it easier for convention guests to stay at the Centreplex. It's also a tactic to attract more visitors and a way to make the city more money. The hotel will actually be built across the street from the Centreplex and the two buildings will be linked via a pedestrian bridge that crosses Coliseum Dr. It will be interesting to see just how large the new hotel will be and how it will impact the skyline.

After the completion of the gateway office building and the announcement of the new hotel, it's nice to see that downtown construction is picking up steam again...it'll be nice to see a more dense city center.

Now if only DOT can save I-16's horrendous traffic problems so that visitors can actually GET to the new hotel...

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I don't know if it's been posted here already or not, but Macon will be building a new downtown hotel soon.  The hotel will be comparable in size (and number of rooms) to the current Crowne Plaza Hotel across the river.  The hotel is planned to be an addition to the Macon Centreplex/Coliseum Complex.  According to the city, Macon's convention center currently doesn't have an attached hotel and a new hotel will make it easier for convention guests to stay at the Centreplex.  It's also a tactic to attract more visitors and a way to make the city more money.  The hotel will actually be built across the street from the Centreplex and the two buildings will be linked via a pedestrian bridge that crosses Coliseum Dr.  It will be interesting to see just how large the new hotel will be and how it will impact the skyline.

After the completion of the gateway office building and the announcement of the new hotel, it's nice to see that downtown construction is picking up steam again...it'll be nice to see a more dense city center.

Now if only DOT can save I-16's horrendous traffic problems so that visitors can actually GET to the new hotel...

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I think that project is no longer being looked at. I heard that the developers pulled out and are not going to build it. Anyone heard otherwise?

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The telegraph last reported that the Atlanta developer pulled out of the project (the macon developers are still working on it) because of a clash of ideas. The Macon developers are in the midst of hiring new partners to finish the project.

Nothing ever takes off in Mactown without controversy. There's still the issue that the city is going broke but they're steady wasting money on downtown beautification projects, renovations, etc. Gotta love Mayor Ellis. :rofl:

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