Tag Archives: construction

A new plan for a Standard site across from Railroad Park

parksideaptsiteAs dirt was moving to enabling the street in front of it to be repaved this morning, schematic approval was given for a new residential development along 1st Avenue South between 17th and 18th Streets by Birmingham’s Design Review Committee. The working name for the proposed S-shaped building, presented by CRD, RR, LLC, is Parkside Apartments.

The proposal, which must now return before the committee for approval of materials and finishes in addition to final design, calls for it to contain 237 rental units, (22% of them 2 bedroom units),  meaning as many as 286 residents living across from Railroad Park. It is estimated the $21 million project could break ground within the next 10 weeks according to David Austin, representing GA Studio this morning. The current proposal suggests a mix of metal panels, stucco, and brick veneer. Amenities for residents would include a fitness center, 2nd floor garden terrace, and pool.

The $21 million project is slated to sit on the site once considered for construction of the Standard at Midtown, a $40 million 11-story development containing 145 units, a mix of both condominiums and rentals, proposed by Corporate Realty Development (one of the companies involved in this new effort) back in 2004.

There were some concerns raised about the lack of retail spaces represented in the schematic plans reviewed by the committee. The working draft of the city’s comprehensive plan was referenced by one member as they pointed out the hope for more mixed  use development opportunities to be undertaken, particularly given this site’s location across from the award-winning park. When asked by the committee to explain the situation, Austin from stated it was due to current market conditions, pointing to existing retail spaces currently vacant in mixed-use projects in the immediate area, including Cityville.

Parking was also talked about, specifically in relation to the amount of space it takes up versus potential commercial opportunities. The schematic shows there would be two levels of parking accessible from the alley, a move necessary in order to accommodate one parking space per tenant. The plan shows street level would contain 131 spaces. The proposed 4 or 5 story structure would be the first project built since developers signed a compact in early 2010 committing to handling parking inside the block whenever possible. Time will tell whether this and other developments will resemble any of the conceptual proposals presented at that time.

Time to meet about I-20/59 again


If you were upset you missed the public meeting held last July about the proposed changes to the portion of I-20/59 running through downtown Birmingham, you’re in luck. ALDOT will be holding another public involvement meeting next Thursday, March 28, in Boutwell Auditorium‘s exhibition hall. The open house will take place from 4 – 7 p.m., with a public comment period occurring from  5 – 6 p.m.

Based on the flyer being distributed through neighborhoods immediately adjacent to the well-traveled stretch of asphalt, the purpose of the meeting is to go over plans for replacing the elevated section of I-20/59 between the 31st St. N. and I-65 interchanges. It also states they will also be talking about modifications to both of those interchanges in addition to an “11th Avenue Corridor Reconstruction from I-65 to I-59/20.”

Those who’ve driven over to take a look at the new Westin hotel and Uptown entertainment district in recent days have probably noticed an increased presence by crews conducting soil testings (as reported on al.com on March 17). There may also be discussion about the effects of an expanded scope of project and whether any property will need to be acquired in order to carry it out.


Signs of progress at and around Regions Field

01092013 RegionsFieldconstructionThere are some who drive along 14th Street daily to check on the progress of the new home for the Birmingham Barons, Regions Field. Many of them watch to see just how they’ll finish it in time for Opening Day in April.

Well, for the time being, those cars will need to be driving along 1st and 3rd Avenues South instead in order to check on progress as detour signs greet cars as they approach those intersections.

This is the way it is expected to be for approximately the next month as construction continues on the sporting venue located across the street from Railroad Park. One thing to note – Good People Brewing Company‘s taproom will maintain its current operating hours. It just means that you’ve got to park alongside Railroad Park or on 2nd Ave. S. between 14th and 15th Streets and walk to it. It also means the 2nd Annual Birmingham Brewnanza Brewery Collectible Show being hosted by the local chapter of the Brewery Collectibles Club of America is still on too, and that’s a good thing.

There’s some other stuff happening nearby as recapped on the Birmingham Business Journal‘s website earlier today as a result of another pending deal to build housing along the park.

Construction of new Walgreens on Clairmont progresses

Walgreens under constructionConstruction of the new Walgreens location on Clairmont Avenue seems to be moving along smoothly – today’s sudden downpour notwithstanding.

The 13,000 square foot building looks like it’ll be ready to open late this year, its location the result of efforts to spare the historic fire station it now sits across the parking lot from that houses Bogue’s. As mentioned on this site last year, the agreement that served as the basis for the resulting project isn’t exactly being seen as binding anymore.

The drugstore chain’s practice in recent history of taking over former Borders locations and converting them into spaces similar to their flagship store in downtown Chicago might have one wondering if we’ll see any of those innovations in this new location, including the new “Well Experience Format” they’re beginning to roll out across the country.  They’ve also been looked to as a national chain attempting to tackle food desert issues, but its close proximity to a Piggly Wiggly would make that less important here.

The parent company has been busy too – naming a former McDonald’s CEO its new non-executive chairman and investing in European chain Alliance Boots, setting the stage for a full merger in as little as three years.

Incidentally, the Facebook group that was originally created to help lead to how this new Walgreens location was developed re-branded itself just this morning to focus on a new effort, to Save Birmingham’s Schools from their Board.

More microbrews for Birmingham

Avondale Brewing Company under construction. Via Fan Page on Facebook.In case you haven’t been able to tell, Birminghamians truly love their beer. We’re also becoming a home of some rather tasty brew with many of us supporting Good People Brewing Co. whenever possible (incidentally they’ve announced that their new equipment (including canning) should be here by October.

We have blog dedicated to our love of the stuff here in The Magic City (read: Beeringham). We’ve got an incredible annual beer tasting event that just celebrated its third year earlier this month. The metro area’s even the home of Free The Hops.

So you can imagine just how easy it would be to let folks know that you’re planning to open the second brewery in town in two months… very.

Avondale Brewing Company announced their existence via Facebook one week ago today; it now has nearly 1,200 fans 2:15 p.m. It was featured in The Birmingham News just three days after its Facebook debut. They’ve even got their own Bhamwiki listing and a few followers for their Twitter profile (though they can always use more).

They hope to be open no later than the beginning of next year. I even enjoyed using it to talk about accentuating the positives of the city late last week

Photo: Avondale Brewing Company under construction. Courtesy of their fan page on Facebook.

Late arrivals

The Lyric (48 of 54). Josh Self/Flickr

Take heed: A voluntary precautionary recall of over the counter children’s medicine by drug maker MacNeil Consumer Healthcare was announced last Friday that included Children’s Tylenol and Children’s Motrin.

Geek out: If you wanted to RSVP for Tuesday evening’s TechMixer Expo (organized by TechBirmingham), your last chance was at 5 p.m. Monday evening. That’s OK – walk-ins are welcome at the Sheraton Birmingham downtown.

Busy weekend: The Birmingham News reported today that 132 arrests were made during this past weekend’s Schaeffer Eye Care Crawfish Boil. Ninety of those were of minors possessing alcohol.

Enter The Marketplace: Birmingham Mayor William Bell introduced a proposal to build a new Westin hotel and an entertainment district adjacent to the BJCC to the City Council this afternoon. It must still be approved by the BJCC Board.

Photo: The Lyric (48 of 54). Josh Self/Flickr

One week = Habitat house in Wylam

Habitat home in East LakeThe local chapter of Alabama Power‘s Service Organization announced its participation in the construction of a new Habitat for Humanity home in Birmingham’s Wylam community to start this Saturday, May 1.

The press release points out that the new home will be built to LEED standards by the organization’s Magic City chapter and other partners in less than one week.

Habitat for Humanity of Greater Birmingham has been extremely busy recently. The photo above shows a home completed earlier this year in Birmingham’s East Lake community. The list of current build projects is available on the organization’s website.

Photo: Habitat house in East Lake. André Natta/bhamterminal.