For Lease Fantasies

One of the most interesting buildings in Decatur – the stone “Beautiful” building behind the Marlay – is up for lease!  The owner, gave this history of the property in a comment a couple years back…

The land that the Grange and the other 2 buildings ( Stone house, and warehouse behind BEAUTIFUL gate ) sit on was developed by an elderly stone mason in the 1940′s. The house and warehouse were built first. This was his house and studio/warehouse. He built the granite building where the Grange is located later hoping to rent it out. His first tenant was a Hudson car dealership. A Studebaker dealership was across the street, and Oldsmobile dealership was where the CVS is now.

All 3 buildings used to be connected, but a fire in the early 80′s partially destroyed the roof over the nexus of the buildings – creating the interesting space behind the gate. In the late 90′s I commissioned local artist Robert Witherspoon to make a gate to secure the courtyard area for my sculpture studio. The “Beautiful” comes from a fabled gate in Jerusalem; the Gate Called Beautiful.

The building where the Grange is underwent extensive renovation in 2001. The renovation of the rest of the property has been hampered by the Federal Government declaring the property within the 100 year flood plain since that renovation. I am in the process of clearing hurdles to renovate the rest of the property to honor the historic structure, and I may need the support of the Decatur Metro community in the future.

All that said, what would you like to see open up in this unique structure?

25 thoughts on “For Lease Fantasies”


  1. They paved paradise and put up a parking lot
    Hey now now, don’t it always seem to go
    That you don’t know what you got ’til it’s gone
    They paved paradise to put up a parking lot
    Why not, they paved paradise
    They put up a parking lot
    Hey hey hey, paved paradise and put up a parking lot

    1. Look closely and you’ll see that they didn’t even bother to pave. Silver car in the background is parked at least partially on the grass. What exactly is up with that?

  2. I hope they never pave paradise. Paradise has been paved way too often in Decatur, and even more so in the rest of our region.
    My opinion is the best use for this property would be use by an artist collective live/work area. That would honor the original builder and the community. I can dream.

  3. Mixed use, of course:

    DM Server Farm

    Friedrich Hayek Center for Remedial Economics DM Posters Outreach Office

    CSD Superintendent Search Committee Headquarters

  4. I am amazed at the continued clamor expressed for MORE BEER JOINTS in Decatur. Really, people, aren’t there already enough of the fusty beery places to satisfy your needs?

  5. How bout use it as a single family residence?

    Information center for the city of Decatur visitors…a Decatur history center….something civic…?

  6. I’ve always thought that a single screen, art house movie theater would do really well in downtown Decatur. The Atlanta metro is really lacking in good cinema, and downtown Decatur is lacking in things to do besides eat and drink.

  7. I love Cine! It’s one of my favorite places in Athens. In terms of size, it would fit perfectly in Decatur.

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