Our Stories

Atherton’s Revitalization Brings A Resurgence to South End


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As published on on October 30, 2019.

Construction at Atherton, a cool mixed-use development in the heart of South End, is wrapping up and tenants are starting to open their doors.

We’ve transformed Atherton Mill into a modern mix of residential, retail, and dining places in one central place,” EDENS Managing Director Lyle Darnall told the Agenda. “It’s exciting to see our vision come to life, and could not be more thrilled to welcome the community to experience Atherton, the soul of South End.

Background: When national retail developer EDENS purchased Atherton Mill in 2007, they had big plans for what they felt could be the new center of gravity for South End.

Fast forward twelve years and that vision is coming together in the form of 35 retail spaces taking up 116,000 square feet for dining, shopping, and entertainment — topped with a 346-unit apartment community named Novel Atherton, spearheaded by Crescent Communities.

13 tenants already at Atherton: Not Just Coffee, O-Ku (#1 sushi restaurant), Big Ben (English-style pub), Anthropologie, Free People, Brideside (Chicago-based wedding retailer), Alton Lane (custom menswear), Living Kitchen, Bookout Blooms (flowers), Savory Spice Shop, Sola Salon Studios, Vin Master (wine shop), and Warby Parker.

17 tenants opening in the coming months — with the majority opening in November — at Atherton:

  • Uniquities – Now open – This women’s boutique is comparable to Monkee’s in terms of helpfulness/friendliness of staff, price point, and variety of cool-girl brands (including Loeffler Randall, Rag & Bone, Misa, Citizens of Humanity, Amanda Uprichard, AG).
  • Madewell – Opens November 1 – Size-inclusive women’s clothing store known for their denim and easy-to-wear laid-back style.
  • Arrow – Opens November 1 – Cool barbershop that offers haircuts, shaves, and beard trims.
  • Barry’s Bootcamp – Opens November 2 – Trendy high-intensity interval-based workout class that can help you burn up to 1,000 calories per session.
  • Drybar – Opens November 7 – Salon that only does blowouts and updos, and that has incredible hair products.
  • Bonobos – This men’s retailer features everyday wear, suits, swimwear, and golf apparel.
  • Lululemon – Fitness and lifestyle clothing brand for men and women.
  • Sephora – High-end makeup and beauty retailer that carries some of the best brands in the business.
  • Indaco – This highly rated Charleston-based Italian restaurant will feature pasta, pizza, and cocktails.
  • West Elm – They have furniture, bedding, and other home goods with a contemporary design.
  • Cava – Build-your-own Mediterranean bowl and pita concept.
  • The Eagle – Fried chicken restaurant with Southern sides, craft beer, and live music.
  • The Golden Carrot – This jewelry store carries a curated selection of whimsical jewelry from multiple independent designers.
  • Las Olas – Charleston-based bathing suit shop with bikini separates priced around $100.
  • Society Social – Furniture store that specializes in punchy custom designs made in-house.
  • Paint Nail Bar – This nail salon has six mani/pedi options, and they use ceramic basins for pedicure treatments instead of the whirlpool ones used in traditional salons.
  • Legion Brewing’s Trolley Barn Fermentory – Expect indoor and outdoor seating, a second-floor mezzanine and patio with unobstructed views of Uptown Charlotte.

I love South End, and to be able to bring the Trolley Barn Fermentory to this hip vibrant area of Charlotte is so exciting,” Legion Brewing owner Phil Buchy said. “The Atherton Trolley Barn is right on the Rail Trail, providing great pedestrian access with its walkability to multiple neighborhoods.

Apartments: NOVEL Atherton, a 346-unit apartment community on top of the ground-floor retail, is now leasing. Rent starts at $1,394 for their 530-square-foot studio up to around $3,000 for their fanciest two-bed, two-bath, 1,172-square-foot unit. “This irreplaceable location provided us a unique opportunity to combine an amenity-rich community with the convenience of transit-oriented, mixed-use living,” Michael Tubridy, managing director for Crescent Communities, explained.

Light rail stop: Currently CATS, the city, and local stakeholders are discussing the addition of an at-grade crossing aligned with Atherton. Future plans are to add a new Blue Line Station to serve this development and the growing population around it.

Rail Trail: It’ll run directly through Atherton on the backside of Novel. Shops and restaurants will face toward the trail, and there will be public gathering spaces for farmers markets, small concerts and tons of activities for residents and the general public.

Traffic light: A new traffic light will be going up on South Boulevard near the Chipotle and Mr. K’s (thank goodness).