I like the plan as presented and believe it will be a great addition to the community.
I moved to DT Alpharetta almost five years ago in hopes of living in a "live, work, play" environment. At the time, the City of Alpharetta was planning a revitalization of the historic district. After several failed attempts that is finally happening, hooray! I was equally excited when once upon a time, Prospect Park was on the map, but it also failed only to be reawakened by North American Properties as Avalon. I live in a community where several townhomes have been rented out because the original homeowners were transferred and did not want to give away their home in this downturned economy. They are holding onto their investment for better times. These townhomes are commanding high rental fees because of the location. Recently, I've also become aware of some of the rent amounts in the surrounding apartment communities. They, too, are commanding high rental fees. There are folks out there who are willing to and can pay rents that are sometimes higher than a mortgage would be if they bought due to low interest rates. In my heart, I don't feel that the apartment homes over the retail will ever become "low rent" homes. The higher than average income of the people who live and work in Alpharetta supports that feeling.
The bottom line is that I am in favor of Avalon moving forward even with the planned apartments. It is my suspicion that most of the Alpharetta residents who live in the immediate surrounding communities moved to this location because they want to live in an area where they can walk to restaurants and entertainment. North American Properties has put forth beautiful images of what Avalon could be, which will be different from any other retail/office development in the Greater Atlanta area. Citizens, don't turn away the mega-investment North American Properties is willing to make in Alpharetta. It's time for the renewal of Alpharetta!