Decatur Development Blog

Expansion and Development in the Greater Decatur area

Posts Tagged ‘Priceville’

MorCo Industrial Park and dropping jobless rates?

Posted by alalto on July 21, 2009


The bonds for the $16 Million industrial park south of Hartselle, along Thompson Road and Interstate 65. This industrial park is expected to be similar, yet different, than the Mallard-Fox Industrial Park along the Tennessee River, west of Decatur on Alabama 20/ALT 72.

The parks are supposed to be similar in that the two will both have influence from the Decatur-Morgan County Port Authority, which allows for railroad access, and other intramodel utilities. Also, the new park is expected to look at more technical and hi-tech manufacturers/industries as tenants. First tenants will likely be located along the interstate, of course because of the exposure.

Now, I’ll start with the pros of this:

Location location location
Because this park is to be located along I-65, it is obvious that we’re going to get more visible industry/business from the interstate. Why is this good? Because it matters how people view the Decatur area. Is the area rural? or is it more metropolitan? We all know that the area is more metropolitan, but most people (whether they be simple tourists or developers/businessmen/potential investors) don’t have any clue what the area is like, mainly because there’s nothing to look at in Morgan County. Now, while I enjoy foliage, and the greenery along the highway, there isn’t much at this specific location. And it is important that the Decatur area is viewed as a developed/developing, economic, GROWING, and maintained area. Potential investors, though many will deny it, focus a lot on vanity, which is basically how the area looks to outsiders. In other words, it is important to be viewed as growing in order to continue growing.

The cons:

Meh…
As far as the financial impact on the county’s and the cities’ books goes, it’s not that risky. The money to make payments on the bonds comes from a steady income of “in lieu of tax” payments made to the area by TVA (Tennessee Valley Authority). If this industrial park is as successful as Mallard-Fox has been, we can expect a great return in the initial investment made by the county. And, ladies and gentlemen, Mallard-Fox has been outstandingly successful.

The only negative I really see with this park is the area that it will be improving. While we can expect a great deal of realistic influence on communities that are within about 5 to 10 miles (it all honestly depends on a complex “distance decay” formula which is in all honesty to complex for me to explain) it doesn’t seem that communities as far away as Somerville, Morgan City, and Lacey’s Spring will be realistically affected by this. Other than having some more money flowing into their municipal coffers, I don’t see any seriously noticeable growth in population or private sector economy occurring. However, I do see a possible positive affect on areas like Moulton, Lacon, Eva, Falkville, and Danville. The obvious benefactors are Hartselle, Decatur, and Priceville, because of their close proximity to the area. Hartselle and Falkville are the communities that I see benefiting the most economically, while I think we’ll see Decatur grabbing most of the population growth involved, followed by Hartselle, then Falkville, then Danville.

Apparently, the unemployment rate in the Decatur Metropolitan Area has decreased! The Decatur Metro was the ONLY part of the state to see a decrease in the unemployment rate in the ENTIRE state.

The Decatur Metropolitan Area, which consists of Morgan and Lawrence Counties saw the following:

in Morgan County, unemployment decreased from 10.2 to 10.1%
in Lawrence County, unemployment decreased from 12.4 to 12.3%

While the two counties saw a decrease, the rates were still high when compared to the counties with the lowest rates in the state. The lowest rate in the state was Shelby with 7.6 percent, followed by Madison with 7.9, then Coffee County (Enterprise/Elba in the Dothan Area) with 8.2. The Coffee County rate was particularly pleasing. It shows that the Wiregrass region of Alabama is now becoming a truly metropolitan region. Anyways, the lowest rate in the state was Wilcox with 24.4 percent.

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2008 City Census Estimates Released

Posted by alalto on July 2, 2009


The 2008 Census Estimates for cities were released yesterday. In Alabama, the city that gained the most numerically was Huntsville, growing by about 5,000 people. Since 2000, Huntsville has grown by about 16,700 people. After Huntsville came Tuscaloosa with about 12,000. In terms of percentage growth, Calera (a Birmingham suburb) was tops with 211% since 2000, growing by about 7,000 people to around 10,000. After Calera came Vance (a Tuscaloosa suburb).

Other cities our region:

Decatur: A slow grower, Decatur has gained about 2,000 people since 2000, last year gaining about 500.  The growth rate has begun to increase slightly, so we’ll see where that takes us.  Sadly, Auburn surpassed Decatur to take the number 8 spot among the largest cities in the state.  Decatur now sits at # 9 with 56,068 people.

Athens: The third largest city in Huntsville’s metro area, Athens has been growing a good pace.  The city has grown by about 5,000 people since 2000, and about 1,000 in the past year.  The growth rate has definitely increased as the East Limestone region of the Valley has started to influence growth on the suburban parts of Athens.

Madison: Among the fastest growing cities in the state, it has gained nearly 10,000 people in the past 8 years.  It now stands at 38,714.

Somerville: Since 2000 Somerville has lost about 200 people.  Lately, however, the town has begun to gain again.  A good sign.  Current estimates show the population at 505.

Hartselle: The second largest city in Morgan County and the Decatur Metropolitan Area has continued with its steady growth.  A very slow grower for the first half of the decade, the city has slowly started to grow a little faster.  The city now stands at 13,888.

Eva: The second smallest city in Morgan County has continued its very slow growth.  It now stands at 587.

Falkville: Until 2005, the city was losing people.  However, the population has turned around.  The population has lost people since 2000, however, the city has gained 1 person in the past year.

Trinity: A fast grower for a city its size, it now stands at 1,976.

Moulton: A city with VERY spastic growth, Moulton has gained just 7 net citizens since 2000.  But, growth is growth, the city has gained about 10 in the past year.

Priceville: Priceville is still one of the fastest growing cities in the state. Since 2000, Priceville’s population has increased by about 1,100 people, or 70%.

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A New Post!!

Posted by alalto on September 24, 2008


Wow, a new post!? I’m sorry, until today there really hasn’t been anything worth mentioning in the paper.

So, there’s some maintenance work on Alabama 67 all the way to Somerville goin on. I’m not sure if this is related to the approved widening of 67 all the way to the Somerville. Of course, the US 31 maintenance is still goin on. Beltline work is almost finished too.

The Decatur Planning Commission made it look like there was no economic downturn whatsoever in the area the other day. The commission approved plats of land for residential development.

* 26 condo units in Westmead

* Preliminary layout to construct 43 single-family residential lots at Country Living Estates, north of Vaughn Bridge Road and east of Byrd Vest Road, in the city’s planning jurisdiction.

* Preliminary layout to construct 36 single-family residential lots at the Cedar Grove subdivision, south of Newport Drive and west of Kensington Way Southwest.

* Final layout to construct 21 patio homes at the Crowne Point subdivision, south of Ben Poole Road and west of Jade Point Southeast.

So, all in all, I have a conservative estimate of about 323 new residents to the area with these units. That’s assuming that all current demographics remain constant.

In tourism news, the city collected $841,966 in lodging taxes. A 9% increase of the last fiscal year.

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Optimism has left the building…

Posted by alalto on August 27, 2008


Get ready Decatur. These next few years are gonna be ROUGH. I am extremely disappointed that Don Stanford one the race. Right when Don Kyle’s administration was starting to have some vision, and I was actually starting to have some faith in him, this happens… I can’t believe this is happening…

I don’t know what’s going to happen to the city. I can’t even begin to guess. Anything. All I know is that this man does not have the same vision for the city that Don Kyle, and his administration, were starting to develop. They were starting to realize the importance of redevelopment of downtown. They were starting to realize the importance of Northside (Northern reaches of the city limits) Development.

Ahhhh, this man is a cook I swear. He says that the city has already borrowed enough money, which means Sweetwater is good as dead. I don’t understand why he thinks that. I thought that the city has a near perfect credit score because it never borrows money.

The city was heading in a great direction. I think that’s probably over now. The bad thing is that in Decatur the transition between mayors usually takes about 6 months.

Thankfully though, Hartselle is keeping it’s current mayor. So that’s some good news. As far as I know, he’s been doing a pretty good job. Though, I’d like to see some more downtown redevelopment in Hartselle.

Some more good news is that Priceville is also keeping their mayor, Melvin Duran.

Yea, can you say stagnate? I welcome any and all responses I’ll do my best to get to them and reply in posts.

PS: Grazie Oogaboga, haha, I tend to mess up my grammar when I rant….

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2 turning into 4 on 67

Posted by alalto on August 22, 2008


In today’s Decatur Daily, an article announced that Alabama 67 will be widened to four lanes all the way to Priceville (5.7 miles). This is great news. There is a significant lack of four lane highways in the eastern Morgan County part of the Greater Decatur Area. About 13,500 cars travel this portion every day. For a road this size, that is a lot of cars. I am almost certain that once the economy picks back up, there will be some significant development spurred in the Somerville Area. Priceville should see a lot of economic growth too.

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Celebration Arena sale is crumbling…

Posted by alalto on August 3, 2008


Yay!  This blog was listed as a Top Blog on August 1st 2008 under the Growing Blogs.

http://botd.wordpress.com/2008/08/01/growing-blogs-826/

So, apprently Celebration Arena (out in Priceville) that was supposed to be sold to these Chase people for some development is kinda in a bad spot.  The Chase people have some kinda problem with making these payments for the arena and the current owners are considering selling it to somebody else if the Chase people don’t step up.

I don’t care who buys it as long as they develop it into something nice.  It’s definitely no where near where it was when it was in it’s former glory.  Maybe, something can be worked out.

Please, everyone, can we stop bashing Decatur and complaining about how it’s so awful here and start doing something about it?  I’d like to see something good happen, and that’s never gonna come to fruition if people don’t start talking to other people that can actually do something about it. 

If you have an idea, a worry, a complaint, or just want to make a statement, get in touch with your councilman!!  The council’s purpose to represent the citizens, and do their best to make the city better, mostly based on how the city wants it.  Obviously, that isn’t how it’s been working.  So, let’s change that!  I’m sure everyone that reads this blog that actually has something to do with Decatur has some kind of idea or statement they would like to be known by the council. 

I think we could really make a big statement by all sending the councilmen e-mails and letters.  If they are as pro-Decatur as they say they are, they’ll listen and take what you have to say into consideration.  So, please, have pride in your city and get off your butt and do something about IT!

I think I’ll come up with some kinda catchy slogan and post it in the next update.  Maybe people will remember it and actually start doing something…

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Doing business in Decatur, and 6th Avenue renovations

Posted by alalto on July 29, 2008


I was reading the Insider in the Birmingham News today. The article put the spotlite on the Alabama metros that ranked in a list of cities to do business. In the entire state, Auburn-Opelika ranked 5th, Huntsville was ranked 32nd, Tuscaloosa was ranked 90th, and Decatur was 100th. You can look at the link for the full list.

Birmingham News: Insider

The owner of the small shopping center at the corner of 6th Avenue and 11th Street SE is spending $65,000 on renovating the property. If you’re not familiar with where this is, it’s the center that Mando’s used to call home. I miss Mando’s 😦 Anyway, YAY! finally. This place has been look awful for the longest time, so it’s about time this place got a facelift.

Daily Article

In other news, the Chili’s that is being constructed at the corner of the Beltline and Modaus Rd SW is nearly finished.

The city of Priceville is asking the people that own the Morgan County Fairgrounds (they plan to move the fairgrounds to an area in Priceville) to drop the plan to move there. Which I do not agree with. Priceville needs some more development.

And the town of Trinity is petitioning MCATS (Morgan County Area Transit Service) to provide the town service. That should have already been done, considering that MCATS already services Eva and Lacey’s Spring.

BTW, here’s the Daily article about the city council approving the Sweetwater contract.

Daily article

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