By Wendy Binns

The annual Downtown Development Day hosted by Central Atlanta Progress and the Atlanta Downtown Development was held last month at AmercicasMart.

The opening session began with CAP President A.J. Robinson welcoming Maria Vargas, Director of Atlanta Better Buildings Challenge and Excellence Award. This award recognizes buildings that have been retrofitted to conserve water and energy. They measured total energy and water savings of each of the participating Downtown buildings and the award went to Hyatt Regency. The Turner Building (133 Luckie Street) and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church were also considered for the award. Vargas explained that this award is about three words: leadership, results and transparency. She said Atlanta “is leading other cities and driving change.”

Recognizing newly created and renovated spaces, the Atlanta Downtown Design Excellence Awards were presented to Living Walls, The City Speaks for the community/residential category; breensmith Advertising for the office category; and, White Oak Kitchen & Cocktails for the restaurant/bar category.

Downtown Atlanta Economic Impact Award for 2012 was presented to Legacy Property Group and President and Founder David Marvin.

Breakout sessions followed the presentation with topics such, Re-shaping Atlanta Streetcar Neighborhoods for the Millennials and Navigating Today’s Real Estate Financial Market.

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Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.