Signs of change are everywhere — almost
Not that we really need official confirmation, but indeed the owners of the Holiday Inn/Holiday Inn Express hotel chains have no intentions of buying and renovating the Medical Arts building on Peachtree Street where the company’s signs are currently draped.
The huge banner proclaiming “The Signs of Change Are Everywhere” mean everywhere you see a refurbished Holiday Inn hotel but not actually at 384 Peachtree.
Spokeswoman Sarah-Ann Soffer said the company’s advertising team wanted an “iconic” location for the advertising and indeed, the banners, which are part of a global re-branding campaign, will be seen in such well-known places as Times Square in New York.
“We felt the Medical Arts building was a very high-profile location. It is a very high-traffic location,” she said by phone today.
Mind you, not high-profile enough that anyone has actually occupied the building in years but high-profile enough for an ad campaign.
(Ms. Soffer, who is based in Atlanta, very helpfully said the building has been vacant since the 1990s).
Holiday Inn is the first company to use the building as a place for outdoor advertising, and one can see why it’s enticing. Not only do you have a lot of car and bus traffic at that corner, but the banners must be visible from the nearby condos and hotels.
Something about this is depressing in a post-modern kind of way. The building still has value — but not as a building. As an easel. As a backdrop.
Of course, to play devil’s advocate here, who can blame developers?
Why would I, as a developer, want to build or renovate a building that sits right next to a huge, freakin’ highway? What kind of a view is that? And the area right in front of the building is one of Atlanta’s famous lulls, where development just stops.
(I will stop here before launching into one of my pet theories, which is that Atlanta should embark on its own Big Dig and bury the Connector).
So case closed. No new hotel.
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