Monday, February 28, 2011

Speculation on where Newt's headquarters could be

From Jim Galloway of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution
We’ve heard that Gingrich has had his eye on Buckhead – which is logical. Many Republicans for statewide office have located themselves in the same general area. Eric Johnson and Nathan Deal, both candidates for governor, did so last year. Sonny Perdue’s 2006 re-elect was there, too. The state GOP headquarters was within a stone throw of all.

We asked a GOP veteran with real estate experience what Gingrich might be looking for. Among his points:

– Gingrich will probably be looking for something in the 8,000 square foot range, with options to grow should things look good;

– Gingrich’s Center for Health Transformation has an office off the Glenridge Connector near the top of Perimeter. But he would more than likely want to put some geographic distance between his campaign and his business/private interests. The Federal Elections Commission gets very picky about these things.

– Quick access to Peachtree-DeKalb Airport, and the charter flights that will send the candidate to Iowa and New Hampshire, will be important. But the location needs to be near enough to Ga. 400 or I-85 to make it easy for low-ranking advance teams to make it to Hartsfield-Jackson without too much trouble.

– Given Atlanta real estate prices, Buckhead is a bargain. But Gingrich will probably want to stay away from Grade A space with its glass fronts and marble floors. Hard to ask contributors for money when your front office has valet parking.

– That said, volunteers will want to feel safe when walking to their cars. So Gingrich and his team will probably be looking for something in Grade B real estate. Or perhaps, they’ve already signed the lease.

– Visibility would be important as a backdrop for visiting TV reporters. The 2012 race for the GOP nomination could very well be wrapped up before the Georgia primary. But our GOP real estate veteran said he would recommend a building off a freeway, capable of carrying large signage, to catch those Yankees on their way to Florida.

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