Happy New Year from all of us at KB Advisory Group. As we embark on another trip around the sun, we look forward to celebrating our firm’s 23rd anniversary in October. (Personally, I’m looking forward to celebrating the Big 5-0 in July).
I hope you have many things to look forward to in 2024. Most importantly, we look forward to our continued relationship with our clients and partners.
Comings and Goings
Atlanta continues to evolve and, as a firm, we’re keeping up with the times. We moved to a new office overlooking the BeltLine, after spending the previous six years overlooking Peachtree Street.
Housing Analysis Remains an Area of Expertise
Our 2023 book of business was as diverse as any in our firm’s history.
We continued to look deeply at local housing issues. Most prominently, we were honored to be retained again by ULI Atlanta to update the important regional affordable housing study we did for them originally in 2018. Similarly, we took another look at the emerging Greater Dalton housing market like we had done five years prior.
We also looked at statewide housing issues for our long-time partners at Enterprise Community Partners. Then we zoomed in for a deep dive into rural housing issues for one of our new favorite clients, the City of Cedartown.
Notably, we took great pride in our assistance for Atlanta Housing in helping them create a Choice Neighborhood Transformation Plan that eventually aided in capturing a $40 million HUD implementation grant award for the redevelopment of the former Bowen Homes public housing site. Look for more big things happening on Atlanta’s upper west side.
New Beginnings / Continued Winning in Economic Development
One of the biggest KB advancements in 2023 was our emergence as the Atlanta region’s leading firm providing Economic Development Strategic Plans (EDSP) for local governments. We were honored to win four assignments in this realm in the past 12 months, completing the first EDSP for the City of Tucker in the summer. We’re wrapping up an EDSP for the City of Stockbridge now and have kicked off similar work for the City of Fairburn and the City of Norcross, with more to come in 2024!
TADs Keep-on Keeping-on
For over two decades, we’ve been privileged to be on the forefront of helping local governments implement and execute economic development initiatives through the use of Tax Allocation Districts (TAD) in Georgia. Recently we assisted DeKalb County and Decide DeKalb create two new TADs, one for the redevelopment of North DeKalb Mall and one in South DeKalb. We also helped the City of St. Marys create their third TAD. Moreover, we are honored to recently become the official TAD advisor for Athens-Clarke County.
Impacts Project-specific and Area-wide
We measure economic impacts; it’s part of who we are and what we do.
Some big accomplishments for us this year included continuing our work with Atlanta-area CIDs, measuring their significant impacts. This year alone we helped five CIDs: Boulevard CID, Cumberland, Gateway85, Gwinnett Place, and Sugarloaf. These places are helping our region collect big wins that are necessary to keep our economy healthy and our quality of life high. We’re proud that Downtown Greensboro, North Carolina has engaged us to help them count their successes in 2024.
Further, we’ve explored project specific impacts for private sector clients and helped them make the case for public sector partnerships. This includes exciting projects in Downtown Jacksonville, Florida and in the Lower Tuck District of Charlotte, North Carolina.
Development Opportunities are Not Always Apparent But KB Helps to Find Them
We help identify real estate development opportunities; it’s also part of who we are and what we do.
We recently got reacquainted with a couple of old friends in helping identify downtown development opportunities. Recent mixed-use market studies in Brunswick and in Suwannee highlighted the continuingly growing demand for walkable urban places in all corners of Georgia.
Looking Back Looking Forward
2023 was full of ups and downs for all of us. We started the year convinced we were headed for a general recession that never materialized. However, we know commercial real estate has felt a significant downturn with substantial impacts for many of you. We are ready to be part of the eventual upswing and we humbly think that we can help some of you who are seeking new and interesting ways to get back to the good times. Give me a call if you want to talk more about our work in the private/public partnership space that is helping projects advance.
2024 will undoubtedly see the continuing conversion around the impacts of the shift to the vaunted “hybrid” model of work/work-from-home. We expect to remain involved in this and other “long-tail” outcomes of the pandemic on real estate and urban planning.
A couple other newsworthy updates from KB:
We undertook a strategic planning retreat that led to many great outputs including a new vision statement that you can find featured on our website: