Daily photo by John Godbey|
Richard Terry clears a brush pile at the Walgreens project site in Hartselle.
Hartselle center razed for rebirth
By Deangelo McDaniel
firstname.lastname@example.org · 340-2469
HARTSELLE — An old shopping center that has been part of the landscape here for more than 30 years has been razed to make way for an almost $2 million development.
Bradford Building Co. of Birmingham has removed the strip mall so that Copeland Properties of Knoxville can build an O'Reilly Auto Parts on the site.
After completing this phase of the development in the northwest corner of Alabama 36 and U.S. 31, the company will raze the current auto parts building and construct a 14,820-square-foot Walgreens.
The development should take less than a year, said Mayor Dwight Tankersley, who owns the property where Walgreens is locating.
The timeline for constructing the 10,000-square-foot O'Reilly is four months.
"It should be finished before the end of summer," Tankersley said.
City leaders have not calculated any numbers, but they expect the development to significantly help Hartselle's economy, not just in tax revenue, but with jobs.
O'Reilly is moving its staff to the new location, but Walgreens is bringing new jobs to the area.
Tankersley said Walgreens has not indicated how many jobs the store will bring.
"I guess this will depend on whether the store is open 24 hours a day," the mayor said.
Tankersley said the Walgreens development will significantly change the look of the intersection and may lead to further development.
The other corners at the intersection have gas stations, but CVS Pharmacy expressed an interest in one of the lots as far back as four years ago.
This is about the same time a Walgreens developer contacted Hartselle before Tankersley was mayor.
He talked with the developer, but attempts to work out a deal fizzled.
After Tankersley became mayor, a second developer approached him about his property.
Two other businesses are expected to locate on U.S. 31 by year's end, which should generate additional revenue for city coffers.
Captain D's has purchased the old Southern Sales property on U.S. 31 next to Burger King and is expected to start construction by summer.
About two miles south, Ty Cooper and his mother, Martha Cooper, have purchased land near The Citizens Bank and plan to open a Guthries chicken restaurant.
Either Captain D's or Guthries will be the first fast-food chain to locate in Hartselle since Quizno's opened about five years ago.
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