Just off the intersection of Peachtree and Ralph McGill is an apartment building that has changed little despite all the rapid growth proliferating along the downtown corridor right beside it. Nestled between an HIV clinic and the Downtown Connector, the building has always been known for housing artists, DJs and musicians, and has managed to keep that urban quality throughout the years.
The building is protected from downtown's hustle and bustle by a wrought iron gate leading to a shadowy, comfortable courtyard. Its red brick walls are covered with kudzu, functioning as a reminder of nature rather than an overgrown weed. The foyer of the building also acts as a reminder of past times, with natural light blazing onto a graffiti-covered marble staircase leading to other floors. This is an apartment building for those who need a little funkiness to go with their downtown living, not a pre-fab yuppie storage facility.
Resident Airca Carbo, a local make-up artist, loves the place just for those reasons and she thinks it attracts other like-minded individuals.
How long have you lived at your place?
I've been here a little over a year. My friend's girl lived here back in 1990 and they would throw parties on the roof.
They had parties on the roof?
Yeah, it was a lot of fun. They'd get a DJ, some grills, and the view of downtown just made it great. It's just too bad we don't that anymore. I just love the roof. This 4th of July you could see the fireworks from everywhere: Lenox, Stone Mountain, Decatur and Centennial Park, of course. You can also listen to the acts from Music Midtown from there.
What's you favorite feature of your apartment?
It's definitely the sunroom, plus I live downtown, which is always nice.
Do you try to recommend the place to your friends or do you try to keep it a secret?
I tried to get a couple of my friends in, but they got into different situations. But it would be nice.
How do you like your neighbors?
I really enjoy them. Everyone's pretty artistic and there are a lot of dog owners. Everyone here has sort of created a dog park in the courtyard.
How do your friends like the place when they visit?
They love it. They're really surprised when they come over. Even my friends with posh high rises enjoy the place. They think the place has a character, especially with all the look alike condos everywhere. People are also surprised where it's located because it's surrounded by businesses.
Are people envious of your place or are you envious of the other choices downtown has to offer?
People really like my spot. The only thing I'm envious of is people having washer and dryers in their place.