Alabaster City Hall location picked

Alabaster leaders met Thursday night to pick a location for the new City Hall.

Mayor David Frings and the city council needed to decide where to build so an Atlanta-based design firm can complete a master plan of the new city center.

The city was given two options: one with City Hall on U.S. 31 and another with the building on a nearby lake. Alabaster leaders unanimously favored the second option &8212; but not just for aesthetics.

The city already owns the lake property, while the land on U.S. 31 is privately owned.

&8220;I think it will jump-start this center quicker, much quicker to build on property we own,&8221; said Councilman Mike Sherman.

Sherman, Frings and the rest of the council hope City Hall will serve as a catalyst for the Alabaster City Center. The downtown-like district will be built on 196 acres off of Alabama 119 and is slated to include city buildings as well as retail and residential development.

&8220;The whole point of this is so you can park and walk to whatever you need,&8221; said Councilman Tommy Ryals.

The city owns 111 acres of the city center property. The rest of the land is privately owned. Design firm Tunnell-Spangler-Walsh & Associates will now start work on a master plan, which should take six to eight months to design