Underground Atlanta making another attempt at comeback

Underground Atlanta is making another attempt at a comeback.

And if you had no idea the once thriving entertainment complex was back open, there are many others who were also unaware.

"We saw potential here," said Shaneel Lalani, the owner who closed on the 10 acres at the end of 2020. 

He withstood COVID and slowly came up with a game plan.

"We surveyed residents and other stakeholders to see what they would like Underground to be," Lalani added.

Complex management invited artists initially for free to set up shop. And they came.

So did high-profile clients like The Masquerade and The Comedy Store.

This year during special "First Friday" promotions, thousands are coming downtown for eats, art tours and music.

Most of the activity is below ground, including Kenny’s Alley.

Lalani plans to expand the street level retail as well.

For Lalani long term success may depend on growing his nucleus of patrons. Those are downtown and intown residents.

The purchase by the city of Atlanta of an old state office building right across the street from the Underground will help.

That large tower is being converted to housing.

"I am committed," said Lalani, explaining that he is a locally based owner who is on the property several times a week.