MARIETTA — A county-owned facility that became a launchpad for some of Cobb’s emerging businesses is set to change hands to the tune of $2.1 million.
On Tuesday night, Cobb commissioners are set to ratify the sale of its 57 Waddell St. property in Marietta to the law firm of Gregory, Doyle, Calhoun & Rogers, which is based on nearby Atlanta Street. The Waddell Street building, which sits on about 0.93 acres near Marietta Square, has been for more than two years the home of IgniteHQ, a business incubator formed through the collaborative effort of Kennesaw State University and the Cobb Chamber of Commerce. IgniteHQ began in March 2015 to provide startups and new businesses with resources, advice and a physical space to grow.
Declared as surplus in 2011, the property formerly served as the offices of the county’s property management department, the MDJ previously reported.
The property has been leased by the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia on behalf of Kennesaw State University and, under a lease amendment also to be ratified Tuesday, will continue to be so through June 30, 2020, even as the law firm takes ownership of the building from the county.
“We are set to close on the building following Tuesday’s vote,” county spokesperson Ross Cavitt said, essentially resulting in the law firm becoming KSU’s and IgniteHQ’s landlord.
The University System of Georgia has been renting the Waddell Street building for KSU from the county at a rate of $11,412.50 per month, or $136,950 annually, according to county documents. Under the lease amendment, the rental rate would remain the same under the new ownership through the end of next June.
Where KSU might operate IgniteHQ beyond mid-2020 is unclear.
“The county informed us about their desire to sell the property, and the university is currently reviewing other space opportunities for IgniteHQ,” said Tammy DeMel, a spokeswoman for KSU.
The Cobb Board of Commissioners meets at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Cobb Government Building.