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Developer announces shopping center stores

By Holly Hollman · 340-2445

ATHENS — A local developer is working on a project that will give shoppers a place to buy clothing, visit a salon and eat pizza, Chinese or chicken.

And if shoppers need money for that, there’ll be a bank handy.

Developer Bill Ming of Ming Enterprises announced that his shopping center, French Farms Pavilion, is under construction and should be complete by September.

The 30,000-square-foot center is on seven acres on U.S. 72 across from Wal-Mart.

Clothes, food, salons

Ming said the center will include a young men and women’s clothing chain called Maurices, a national shoe chain, Sally Beauty, GameStop, Pizza Hut delivery, a hair salon, nail salon, mattress retailer, Chinese restaurant and car rental business.

Zaxby’s, a chicken restaurant, and Superior Bank have bought two other parcels on the site.

Ming’s development is the latest in a slew of new businesses locating or planning to locate in Athens.

Remodeling is under way on the Italian restaurant Giovanni’s in the former Wilson’s Fabric store in downtown.

Another restaurant is slated for part of the U.G. White Hardware Store in downtown.

Chick-fil-A has bought a lot on Athens-Limestone Drive at U.S. 72, and Mac’s Sports Bar and Steakhouse is in the works on Jefferson Street across from Cinemagic Theater.

“Growth is spurring more growth,” said Hugh Ball, president of the Greater Limestone County Chamber of Commerce. “Developers hear about and see all the residential lots being developed and new homes on the market and take that into consideration.”

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