New retail, office development coming to Alabaster

Published 12:24 pm Monday, September 21, 2015

The Harbert Realty Services company is looking to bring a new development to U.S. 31 in Alabaster slightly south of the Arby's restaurant. (Reporter Photo/Neal Wagner)

The Harbert Realty Services company is looking to bring a new development to U.S. 31 in Alabaster slightly south of the Arby’s restaurant. (Reporter Photo/Neal Wagner)

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

ALABASTER – A Birmingham-based commercial real estate firm is looking to bring a new retail, restaurant and shopping development to U.S. 31 near Shelby Baptist Medical Center in Alabaster, and is looking to have the center completed by the third quarter of 2016.

Harbert Realty Services Inc. is planning to build the development on the east side of U.S. 31 slightly south of Shelby Baptist. Once completed, the development will be between U.S. 31 and Second Street Northeast.

According to plans submitted to the city, the development will include building space for medical offices, retail tenants and restaurants.

The center will have access points from U.S. 31 and Second Street Northeast.

James Proctor, who is working to develop the site, said the company became interested in developing the property after seeing the large tract was for sale.

“It was interesting that that much land was available,” Proctor said. “We’re really excited about it. We are focusing on the hospital as our big draw.”

Harbert Realty, which also developed the Chace Lake shopping center in Hoover, has not yet finalized tenants for the development, but said it likely will include “fast-casual” restaurants “that will be all-new to Alabaster.”

Plans call for the retail and restaurant space to front U.S. 31, while the medical office space will be close to Second Street Northeast. Proctor said the company will close on the property in November, and is planning to begin construction soon afterward.

Through an agreement with the developer, Alabaster is looking to make improvements along Second Street Northeast, including new sidewalks, said Alabaster City Manager George Henry.

“There will be improvements along Second Street Northeast to include sidewalks to encourage pedestrian traffic within the medical mile, specifically near Shelby Baptist, to patronize these shops,” Henry wrote in an email.

Alabaster is considering a tax incentives package for the new development similar to the package it offered to the Dick’s Sporting Goods development in 2014. The incentive package is tied to the city’s sales tax, and uses a tiered system over a 10-year period.

If approved, Alabaster will reimburse the developer for 90 percent the city sales tax collected at the development during the first year the center store is open. The city will keep 5 percent more of the sales tax revenue collected each year through the 10th year the center is in operation. Alabaster’s 1-cent sales tax earmarked for schools will not be included in the incentives package.