Handlon presents update on Alabaster
By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor
Developers are still working to attract retailers to the proposed Alabaster Exchange shopping center off U.S. 31, and are “optimistic” about the development’s future, Alabaster Mayor Marty Handlon said on March 28.
Handlon’s comments came during an Alabaster-Pelham Rotary Club lunch at Shelby Baptist Medical Center, during which she gave an update on the status of the city.
The Montgomery-based Aronov development company is working with Alabaster to recruit new businesses to the proposed 300,000-square-foot shopping center adjacent to Alabaster’s Colonial Promenade south shopping center.
Handlon said Aronov is still actively recruiting businesses to the development, and said several entities have expressed interest in locating to the shopping center.
“We’ve gotten a lot of interest,” Handlon said. “Some of the smaller businesses are waiting to see what the big-box store will be. I think everyone is waiting to see what is going to happen with the economy.”
Construction plans call for the new shopping center to be about the same size as the south wing of the Colonial Promenade shopping center.
If constructed, the shopping center will be sandwiched between U.S. 31 and Old Highway 31 south of the current J.C. Penny department store and the Steak ‘n Shake restaurant.
Handlon also said she has been pleased with the amount of growth the city has seen in its medical businesses, and said an oyster bar and meat-and-three restaurant is planning to open in the former Pavilion restaurant location off U.S. 31 near Shelby Baptist Medical Center.
During the lunch, Handlon also provided an update on the new Alabaster City Hall, which currently is under construction next to the Alabaster Senior Center.
Once completed, the new City Hall will house all city departments under one roof, and will facilitate city court and City Council meetings. New audio and video equipment will allow the city to record and broadcast its council meetings from the City Hall.