Longtime Montevallo resident donates 167-acre property to city
By STEPHANIE BRUMFIELD / Staff Writer
MONTEVALLO – The city of Montevallo has acquired its largest piece of land yet thanks to a donation made by longtime Montevallo resident Elizabeth Mahler.
At 167 acres, the property located on Alabama 119 is the largest single piece of property located within the Montevallo city limits and has been owned by the Mahler family since the 1930s.
The city hopes to use the space as a city welcome center, Chamber of Commerce office and, possibly, a new City Hall, said Montevallo Mayor Hollie Cost.
“Really, there are just a lot of different ideas being considered,” Cost said of the property, which was acquired Nov. 26 and includes an antebellum home as well as acres of farm land. “We don’t want to move too quickly, but we do want to make sure we have a comprehensive plan for the property so that every decision we make is thoughtful.”
Cost said Mahler approached the city about possibly donating the land in August as a way to “preserve the entryway into the city as a true green way.” The donation stipulates that the house stays as is and the land is used for public purposes, Cost said.
Cost said she hopes the antebellum home will serve as a welcome center directing people to downtown, as well as house the Chamber of Commerce.
“We are considering a number of potential uses for the remainder of the property – even if that use is simply open unimproved park space,” Cost said in an email Nov. 26.
Regarding a new city hall, Cost said the first step would be to find the perfect location and determine the perfect style. The next step would be to secure funding for a new building.
“We are deeply appreciative of (Elizabeth Mahler) for making what was probably a very difficult decision to let go of something that was so close to her family,” Cost said Nov. 26. “Ms. Mahler has great love for Montevallo and its people, and her gift is evidence of that fact.”