By Douglas Sams and Maria Spaorta
Monday, March 14, 2011
Cousins Properties Inc. has won the right to bid on a project that would turn a downtown Atlanta collection of parking lots and rail-lines known as the “Gulch” into a transit hub.
Cousins (NYSE: CUZ) beat out other local developers including Jacoby Development Inc. and H.J. Russell & Co.
The Georgia Department of Transportation, which has been looking for a master developer to build the terminal, selected Cousins on Monday afternoon.
The DOT has planned to carry out the project through a public-private partnership. The master developer will finance and manage construction of the terminal, then recover its investment from income generated by a transit-friendly commercial, retail and residential complex to be built atop the bus-and-rail station.
Cousins is certainly familiar with the Gulch. As late as 2003, it was mulling the possibility of buying the 16-acre property for a future multimodal station.
The long-awaited multimodal passenger terminal will serve as a hub for bus and rail service radiating from the city.