Bank of America Plaza (Atlanta)

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Bank of America Plaza
Bank of America Plaza (Atlanta) is located in Atlanta Midtown
Bank of America Plaza (Atlanta)
location relative to Midtown Atlanta
Bank of America Plaza (Atlanta) is located in the US
Bank of America Plaza (Atlanta)
Bank of America Plaza (Atlanta) (the US)
Former names NationsBank Building
C & S Plaza
General information
Type Commercial offices
Location 600 Peachtree Street NE
Atlanta, Georgia, United States
Coordinates 33°46′15″N 84°23′10″W / 33.7708°N 84.3861°W / 33.7708; -84.3861Coordinates: 33°46′15″N 84°23′10″W / 33.7708°N 84.3861°W / 33.7708; -84.3861
Construction started 1991
Completed 1992
Cost US$150 million
Owner Shorenstein Properties LLC (sponsor)
Management Shorenstein Realty Services
Architectural 311.8 m (1,023 ft)
Roof 284.4 m (933 ft)
Technical details
Floor count 55
Floor area 1,312,980 sq ft (121,980 m2)
Lifts/elevators 24
Design and construction
Architect Kevin Roche, John Dinkeloo and Associates
Structural engineer CBM Engineers Inc.
Main contractor Beers Construction
Bank of America Plaza (Atlanta)[permanent dead link]

Bank of America Plaza is a skyscraper located in between Midtown Atlanta and Downtown Atlanta. At 311.8 m (1,023 ft), the tower is the 107th-tallest building in the world[6]. It is the 15th tallest building in the U.S.,[7] the tallest building in Georgia [8] and the tallest building in any U.S. state capital, overtaking the 250 m (820 ft), 50 story One Atlantic Center in height, which previously held the record as Georgia's tallest building. It has 55 stories of office space and was completed in 1992, when it was called NationsBank Plaza.[9] Originally intended to be the headquarters for Citizens & Southern National Bank (which merged with Sovran Bank during construction), it became NationsBank's property following its formation in the 1991 hostile takeover of C&S/Sovran by NCNB.[10]

Architectural details[edit]

The building was developed by Cousins Properties and designed by the architectural firm Kevin Roche John Dinkeloo and Associates LLC.[11] Designed in the Postmodern style reminiscent of Art Deco, it was built in only 14 months, one of the fastest construction schedules for any 1,000 ft (300 m) building. The Plaza's imposing presence is heightened by the dark color of its exterior. It soars into the sky with vertical lines that reinforce its height while also creating an abundance of revenue-generating corner offices. Located over 3.7 acres (1.5 ha) on Peachtree Street.

There is a 90 ft (27 m) obelisk-like spire at the top of the building echoing the shape of the building as a whole. Most of the spire is covered in 23 karat (96 percent) gold leaf. The open-lattice steel pyramid underneath the obelisk glows yellow-orange at night due to lighting. Originally, the lattice was designed to be clad in glass, but the engineers failed to take the weight of the glass into account. At its most basic, this is a modern interpretation of the Art Deco theme seen in the Empire State Building and the Chrysler Building. The inhabited part of the building actually ends abruptly with a flat roof. On top of this is built a pyramid of girders, which are gilded and blaze at night, with the same type of yellow-orange high-pressure sodium (HPS) lighting now used in most street lights. Its design has been characterized as similar to the Messeturm in Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

The skyscraper, built at a 45-degree angle to the city's street grid, is set back off its eastern and western street boundaries, Peachtree Street and West Peachtree Street, by over 50 yards (45 m). This setback is filled, variously, by driveways, parking garage entrances, potted plants, granite staircases, and sloping lawns. The building directly abuts the sidewalk on North Avenue, its northern boundary, with access to this street through a parking garage entrance and stairs leading from the building's main lobby.

Some urban planners decry the building as a Corbusian "tower in a park", as it actively disengages itself from the urban environment surrounding it, entirely omitting sidewalk-facing retail space. Critics argue that the building encourages its tenants to access it primarily by car and to remain inside the complex during the day. However it is across the street from the MARTA-rail North Avenue station.

In recent years[when?], developers have rumored that the land under the surrounding driveways and lawns may soon be ripe for redevelopment into low- and mid-rise mixed-use buildings with street-fronting uses as the area urbanizes and the value of land in Midtown Atlanta increases. As of 2014, new sidewalks, pavers, ADA ramps, pedestrian light-poles, improved tree wells, new bike racks and landscaping are in planning stages. These neighborhood improvements are slated to be completed by 2016 at a cost of $1.04 million.[12]

Renovations and sustainable building initiative[edit]

In 2014, a $30 million renovation to the lobby, health club, and conference facility was completed[13] It has also achieved Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver certification. The building and property management were awarded Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce E3 Liquid Assets, a recognition in water sustainability.[14] Midtown Atlanta's Midtown Alliance also recognized it as an EcoDistrict Green Luminary for its significant commitment to sustainability practices.[15]

Beginning in 2016, $15 million will be invested over the next few years to significantly modernize the common areas including the lobby, west wing and some deferred maintenance.

Building ownership[edit]

According to published reports in Commercial Property News and Commercial Mortgage Alert, the building was sold for $436 million – a record price at $348 per square foot ($3746 per square meter) – to BentleyForbes, a Los Angeles real estate investment firm headed by C. Frederick Wehba. That was offset by the tower's foreclosure in 2012 when LNR and lenders took the loan back from BentleyForbes for $235 million, half its peak price.

In 2013, CWCapital Asset Management, division of CW Financial Services, took over the asset management, sponsoring and representing the building's bond holders from LNR. Together with real estate services company Cushman & Wakefield and property manager Onyx Equities,[13] they planned for the building is undergoing capital improvements though - a multi-million comeback that was expected to top $30 million by 2018.

In 2016, San Francisco-based Shorenstein Properties acquired Bank of America Plaza under its Shorenstein Realty Investors Eleven LP, a $1.2 billion fund. CBRE was hired to head leasing efforts. Shorenstein plans to rebrand the building by modernizing the common areas and leasing up vacant space.

As of 2016, the largest tenant is the law firm of Troutman Sanders.

In popular culture[edit]

The building appears as the headquarters of Westgroup Energy in the AMC period drama Halt and Catch Fire.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Bank of America Plaza". CTBUH Skyscraper Database. 
  2. ^ Bank of America Plaza (Atlanta) at Emporis
  3. ^ Bank of America Plaza (Atlanta) at Glass Steel and Stone
  4. ^ "Bank of America Plaza". SkyscraperPage. 
  5. ^ Bank of America Plaza (Atlanta) at Structurae
  6. ^ "The Skyscraper Center". 
  7. ^ Fernandez, Bob (21 January 2014). "Tallest between Manhattan and Chicago? An Atlanta peach". The Philadelphia Inquirer. 
  8. ^ "Bank of America Plaza Atlanta". Emporis. Retrieved 21 March 2014. 
  9. ^ Trubey, J. Scott (2012-02-08). "Bank of America Plaza becomes Atlanta's priciest repo". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved 2012-07-05. 
  10. ^ Hayes, Thomas (1991-07-22). "Big Merger Of Banks Called Set". The New York Times. Retrieved 2007-09-28. 
  11. ^ "Bank of America Plaza". Cousins Properties Incorporated. Archived from the original on 2007-07-08. Retrieved 2007-09-28. 
  12. ^ "Construction to Kick Off for Peachtree Street SONO Project in 2014". Midtown Alliance. Retrieved 21 March 2014. 
  13. ^ a b Sams, Douglas (17 January 2014). "BofA Plaza launches new strategy". Atlanta Business Chronicle. Retrieved 21 March 2014. 
  14. ^ "2014 E3 Awards". Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce. Retrieved 21 March 2014. 
  15. ^ "Midtown Alliance Recognizes 19 Businesses, Buildings as 2014 EcoDistrict 'Luminaries'". Midtown Alliance. Retrieved 2 December 2014. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
U.S. Bank Tower (Los Angeles)
Tallest building in America outside of New York and Chicago
Succeeded by
Wilshire Grand Center