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Atlas Building Conversion to Apartments Set to Start

Brent Warren Brent Warren Atlas Building Conversion to Apartments Set to StartPhoto by Walker Evans.
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Plans for the Atlas Building at 8 East Long Street Downtown are starting to come together. Michael Schiff, Principal of the Schiff Capital Group, outlined the latest plans and gave some background on the project Wednesday night at a ULI Columbus event at the building.

Approximately 100 apartments are planned, with a mix of studios, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom units. Parking for each unit will be available in the surface lot adjacent to the building. Earlier plans to put additional apartments on that lot were scrapped; Schiff said that providing structured parking to accommodate the new units as well as the ones in the Atlas Building proved too costly.

The Atlas was built in 1905 and designed by noted Columbus architect Frank Packard. Schiff described it as “the only New York-style building downtown,” and said that the large windows and good views from all sides of the building should help these apartments stand out from other offerings in the immediate vicinity. Other planned amenities include a second floor deck, a fitness room, and easy access from the parking lot to a rear elevator for residents to pull up and unload groceries and other items.

Four retail spaces are planned for the first floor, with one fronting High Street and the others along Long.

Schooley Caldwell, the architect for the project, was represented at the ULI event by President and CEO Robert Loversidge. He expressed excitement about the building and the potential to highlight its historic features – the most prominent of which is probably its three-story cornice, which he said is in surprisingly good condition and will be lit up as part of the renovation.

David Tumen of Porter Wright also spoke on Wednesday about the federal and state historic tax credits that were utilized to make the project happen.

Schiff said that they hope to start construction in 30 to 45 days, and expect it to take about ten to twelve months from that point to complete.

More information about Schiff Capital Group can be found at www.schiffcapital.com.

Interior Photos by Brent Warren. Exterior Photo by Walker Evans.

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  • futureman

    Sucks to see them scrap the additional units that were to go into a new structure on High st. I was hoping to see a surface lot removed …

    However, it’s great to see this moving forward. It’s probably one of my favorite buildings downtown.

  • One of my favorite buildings as well! It should look great with the ornate cornice lit up.

  • Pablo

    That staircase is gorgeous – does the marble extend the full height of the building or is that just a lobby stair?

  • @futureman – I’m also saddened to hear that they weren’t able to make the addition work for the parking lot site, but perhaps it can be built out in the future if it makes sense down the road.

    Happy to see this project moving forward. It’s been empty for too long!

  • joshlapp

    Can’t wait to see these completed. Its certainly on my list of places I would consider to move. I really do hope they clean up the lot though. Its really an eyesore.

  • columbusmike

    Absolutely one of the greatest buildings downtown. Glad to see it moving forward — these units will be in high demand.

  • jpizzow

    Agree with everyone about the building. I only wish we had more that looked like it. I’m not crushed about the scrapping of add’l units (even though we still have a surface lot) If I remember correctly, the building would have only been about 3 stories high, which is way too short for anything that should be considered on High St

  • The adjacent lot will eventually be developed. It’s on High Street for one, and it’s in a steadily improving and more desirable Downtown for another. I suspect we’ll hear about development plans sooner than later.

  • InnerCore

    I’m curious as to why providing the structured parking was to costly being that other places are building structured parking and doing fine.

    Since they’re not doing the parking hopefully they plan to rent these units at very reasonable rates.

  • I echo previous comments–glad to see this finally moving forward but sad that crummy lot will remain. Maybe they can beautify it like the lot at the corner of Gay and Third.

    Also, this project will hopefully lead to more interest in developing the dead zone between Long and Gay. Might also spur some interest in a mixed use building in the lot that abuts the parking garage on the south Side of Long (between High and Third). Seems like that spot could easily be developed given the current set back.

  • IAmCMH

    Sad to hear that the plans to add structure in the parking lot next to the building got scratched. Our downtown needs density. There are too many gaps.
    I am happy to see that one of the most beautiful buildings downtown is getting the much needed attention.

  • leftovers

    very cool

  • sabracadabra

    I love that building and am really glad it’s getting some love. I work out at the Metro across the street, and I love staring out at the cornice and zoning out while I do cardio. It is just such a beautiful building – I wish there were more like it!

  • Posole

    They now have floor plans on the front window of the Atlas building along with signs advertising “New York-Style Living”.

    So, you can now get a glimmer of what the units will look like.

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