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TRoberts

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  1. Although I don't think an official announcement has been made, after finding the leasing plan for Grand River (http://www.fwacgroup.com/pdfs/grand-river.pdf), it appears as though the new upscale outlet center has landed an Off 5th Saks outlet. I wondered if Saks or Neiman would take a leap into Grand River with one of their outlet stores and it appears as though at least one is. The Grand River website has been updated to include an October 28th opening and a recent list of some of the stores coming.
  2. That would be nice but I can't see it happening... With the rumored (although possibly cancelled now) Westin to go on the other end of the shopping center and Colonial's desire to move the center slightly more upscale, I don't see Target being a good fit. Plus a "regular" Target is in the neighborhood of 130k sq. ft. which would probably be pushing it for that site. I'm not sure what the existing building encompass however. Since leasing seems to have done so well with that office tower, I honestly would expect to see another office tower on site with ground level retail and restaurants. Another parking garage as well would compliment the site and allow for more of the existing parking to be used up. I'd like to see another "street-scape" retail created like what is in front of Brookwood. They could create another entrance promenade type setting as you come across the bridge at Applebee's. Have Applebee's frame one corner and another new restaurant frame the other with some shops and whatnot leading back to the existing office tower and a new one. Another option... Would be Brookwood taking some of the land for further development. They are slowly growing to the point they have no more land and I'm sure they are looking toward the future themselves. Personally, it makes more sense to put the rumored hotel on the end with Brookwood and build some type of connection to the two so that Brookwood could take advantage of having a hotel connected to the hospital.
  3. Kimco Developers is listing the Target location at over 191,000 sq. ft. which clearly puts it in the size range of a SuperTarget. Regular Target stores with the small food sections generally run 110,000 to 130,000 sq. ft. (the Target at Tannehill is 127,000). It's also clearly marked on the marketing information for The Grove that it is a SuperTarget.
  4. Well duh... It was always an asanine idea to place the dome anywhere else besides the BJCC. The racecourse was only considered because LaLa and McGregor are in bed together financially...
  5. I'm actually hearing now from a local source that Gateway Towne Center is being delayed by a year at a minimum due to the current economic climate and will not start ground work until summer 2009 for a 2010 opening now. On a side note, an 8-Screen movie theater is moving ahead at the primary Pell City exit in the master planned retail development there. The theater will be built so that a 4-screen expansion can be done at a later date should business go well upon opening.
  6. You're right... But also keep in mind the first and foremost reason the Georgia Dome was built??? As a permanent home for the Atlanta Falcons. It's also connected to the Georgia World Congress Center which is one of the largest convention centers in the southeast and regularly host very, very large scale conventions that Birmingham will quite honestly never host. And not to sound argumenative, but mentioning GA Tech just proves my point. You have a university that has one and half times the land area as UAB with a stadium that has been in existence since 1913 at its present site. The university itself has been around since the late 1800's. UAB has only been in existence since 1969. Although mentioning GA Tech does bring me to think about Georgia State University who is starting a new football program and will be playing in the Georgia Dome for all their home games. GSU is going to be in the same situation as UAB with a very fixed amount of land available to the university and additional land at a very scarce amount at very premium prices. Going back to something Leonard said, I could actually see UAB ultimately moving baseball off campus to possibly a city park or Regions Park (heck, play baseball at historic Rickwood Field - I mean how cool would that be) so that that large land area can at some point be developed further into Academic, Residential and Research space for the university. Off topic, but I'd actually like to see a very quiant and intimate ball park eventually built as part of the BJCC and have the Birmingham Barons ACTUALLY play in Birmingham. Downtown ballparks are reviving lots of downtown areas around the country. We simply have to look to our north in Chattanooga to see that. The new park in Chattanooga has done wonders to help continue growing the downtown area and nightlife choices there.
  7. Thanks for the info Leonard... I knew there probably were but like I said, I searched and searched online for events at Legion Field and never could find anything really. The city of Birmingham pages don't even list the events currently held there except the Magic City Classic and Papa John's Bowl.
  8. First off no, it's not an argument. It's a public forum where you and I are both posting our thoughts and/or opinions. Secondly, there is no need for personal attacks on anyone i.e. "use that advice for your life also". As for being negative, no, actually I'm not. I was making a suggestion that would by far benefit the entire Birmingham area rather than just two or three select areas. I was suggesting taking many of the local parks in the area that may not be being used to their highest and best potential and updating them or repurposing them for other activities. What's so negative in saying that the city could fix up Crestwood park for a soccer field or put some money into Woodlawn High Schools stadium for events... Or put money into Rickwood field to host ball events. There's absolutely nothing negative in any of that. I'd love to see some of the parks and public spaces in Birmingham fixed up. It might help bring some neighborhood pride back to these areas that need some help. Give people a reason to be proud of their city and their community again and maybe some of the negativeness that is so prevalent right now will dissipate. I'm all about positive impact... hence my suggestions for only one stadium venue that could be better utilized more often rather than sitting empty a lot of the time. And actually, I would probably know more about the events that go on at Legion Field if they were publicized but I actually haven't been able to find a single article or calendar advertising events there. The only events I've found anything about what-so-ever online are UAB and Birmingahm-Southern's games along with the Papa-Johns Bowl, Magic City Classic and the AHSAA State Championship games. So I would actually love to know about some of the other events that held at Legion Field on a regular basis.
  9. After spending the day bored and digging around online... I've noticed that Jim Wilson's website now lists Gateway Towne Center (Moody, AL) as a development of theirs. The last time I looking at jwamalls.com I don't recall seeing it listed. They also have gone ahead and listed tenants which include Belk, Dillards, Dicks Sporting Goods, Barnes and Noble, Circuit City among others. That tenant mix falls right about in line with what I would expect to see considering other large developments by Colonial around the metro area. I'm just surprised this isn't a Colonial development instead of Jim Wilson. Digging around further I ran across a leasing plan on the St. Clair County Economic Development site. Leasing Plan The leasing plan shows three large Dept. store tenants at 80k sq. ft. or larger. The two 80k sq. ft. stores would most likely be Dillards and Belk. The 127k sq. ft., in my opinion, is the long rumored Target for the area. That size is right in line with the other area Targets (not supercents) and with Wal-Mart being across the interstate, we know it's not Wal-Mart. Also shown on the leasing plan is a movie theater. I haven't heard any mention of the theaters yet however. Moving one exit up the interstate to Grand River. I've started hearing rumors of some of the additional retail looking to locate there. Two stores I've heard mentioned were BJ's (a warehouse shopping chain like Sam's and Costco) and Saks. I can only imagine if the Saks rumor holds true that it is actually an Off 5th outlet store for Saks. I've heard over and over that the retail portion of Grand River has been described as upscale outlets or premium outlets and an Off 5th store would certainly fit the bill there as an ideal upscale tenant. Alabama doesn't have any true "upscale" outlets and quite honestly doesn't have that many "good" outlet centers anymore. Boaz leaves a lot to be desired now and Watermark place just never really took off like it could have. If Grand River ends up to be something like the Chelsea Premium Outlets located north of Atlanta or in Orlando, then that will definitely be a huge positive. I've seen several mentions from people in various forums about "how can two large retial developments both survive in the St. Clair county area" and that right there is exactly how. Position one as an upscale outlet center an the other as a regional lifestyle center. They could then feed off each other with little to no overlap in stores. And I don't think anyone will argue that the eastern metro is very underserved when it comes to retail compared to areas like Hoover/Pelham/Alabaster, Trussville, Gardendale/Fultondale and even the McCalla/Bessemer area now. Both of these developments will benefit greatly as well from the Pell City area as people from Pell City have to choose to drive to Oxford or Birmingham now to get deparment store shopping (both about 30 to 40 minutes or more). Moody/Leeds is only about 15 from Pell City. Ok, I've rambled on enough now...
  10. I'm sure there are a several events held at Legion Field besides UAB football and AHSAA Championship games and I'm not saying move any of those out of the city but who's to say a facility owned by UAB would be open to those event anyway? How often do you hear about events at Bartow Arena that are not UAB events??? How often do you hear about events at UAB's baseball field that isn't UAB's baseball or softball team??? Yeah, they host camps sometimes but they hardly have a large number of events that aren't connected to UAB. Why would a UAB owned and operated stadium be any different? Are you talking about nightlife around campus at UAB?? Where exactly? Southside is hardly on campus and the only area that UAB would even remotely have a chance to build a stadium would be on the west end of the campus near I-65. There's hardly an argument for nightlife in place in that area unless you count all the liquor stores on Green Springs. The nightlife you speak of will be the Performa Development AT the BJCC (next door to the dome). And IF AND WHEN the trolley's get going, the BJCC and Southside would potentially be connected. I understand on-campus sports venues provide a different atmosphere but you have to also understand that UAB is in the middle of a major metropolitan city. They don't have the land that somewhere like Auburn or Alabama have. They have to fight for the land they get and UAB's best and highest use of the land they get is for research and acedemic buildings. Not for a huge stadium and the infrastructure to support parking of thousands of cars on game day. The amount of acreage it would take to support a stadium on campus with adequate additional parking would consume way more than UAB would be willing to give up. UAB is truly an urban campus and very few truly urban campuses have a large on-campus stadium. Had UAB been along longer and had the foresight to acquire larger swaths of land 50 years ago or 70 years ago, things might be different. High school band competitions (coming from a former band member) are on Saturday's - the same days UAB plays games. The largest, most well known band competition in the Birmingham area is by far the Hoover Invitational held at Regions Park. It's not going anywhere because the Hoover City Schools benefit from the competition. It will remain in Hoover. The Pinson HS Competition is on campus at Pinson High School; they aren't moving. The whole point of most band competitions is to raise money for the host band - that's why most band competitions are held on campus at the host high school. If they go outside that to a place such as UAB or Legion Field, they have to cover additional expenses associated with the venues. And don't you think the city of Birmingham and UAB would expect some sort of cut from ticket sales and food sales? Another perfect example is Spain Park hosting Sparks in the Park with DCI bands. They do it to raise money for Spain Park's high school band. Obviously you haven't kept up to date completely on everything revolving around the dome. A lot of the argument against a 60 or 70,000 seat dome is the LACK OF EVENTS that it would bring. There are too many mid-market cities fighting over too few conventions to fill their domes and convention centers. On the flip side of that, there's the argument that a 30 or 40,000 seat dome would be too small to be financially feasible. Having a dome at the BJCC isn't going to bring so many events to town that the existing events at Legion Field can't continue to be scheduled at the new Dome along with UAB home games. You mentioned several times about soccer games and other small events... You have to also keep in mind the plans for Fair Park and turning that into a sports themed village of sorts. Athletic fields will be included in that project. With a new dome, you also mention the revitalization of the Legion Field area with new homes and retail. Excellent idea... With that revitalization, include a much small athletic complex that seats maybe 7500 to 12000 with a regulation size football field. It could host those smaller events you talk about and also serve as a neighborhood park. They could host rivalry high school games as well. Having this could also help bring a sense of pride to the area having a nice, livable park as well. And just as a side note, if you want to talk about smaller events... there are plenty of city parks around Birmingham that could be revitalized and repurposed to host these smaller events. Crestwood Park provides a great location for Soccer games. Woodlawn High School has a great, historic stadium. There's Fair Park. There's Rickwood Field. The list could go on...
  11. Why build two stadiums to seat over 100,000 people?? If the domed stadium is built so that football can be played in it (i.e. UAB, State Championships, local high school rivalries), then there's no need for UAB to have it's own stadium. If the city, county and UAB can work together towards a common coal to help EVERYONE, why would that not be the best option. UAB wouldn't use a football stadium to it's capacity except for maybe 6 or 7 times a year and that's a huge chunk of money for the university to sink into a project of that size. That could go towards upgrading more of the older acedemic buildings and building more dorms on campus to further their goal of becoming a more traditional college rather than a commuting college. UAB will most likely never match the magnitude of the colleges that have on-campus sports stadiums and is probably better off using municipal facilities in the area. I think everyone would agree that UAB will never have the following of 70,000 or 80,000 fans showing up every game day like Auburn or Alabama.
  12. If (and when) a new domed stadium is built there will be no need to demolish and rebuild Legion Field. Legion Field is in very sad repair as is and any events that are currently held there could be moved to the new domed stadium. The city already doesn't have the funding to pay for all the big ideas that the current administration has; where would funding to completely rebuild Legion Field come from? Certainly not from the University of Alabama system or UAB. If UAB pays to build a new football stadium, you better believe they'd be building it on campus or closer to campus anyway. UAB, in my opinion, would be better off assisting in funding of the domed stadium for the Home of the Blazers. Talk about a state of the art home field advantage. I mean, are there any other college teams that have dome stadiums as their home fields?
  13. Not sure this has been posted anywhere else in the forums but I ran across this image today while researching some. It shows the limits of the Grand River development in Leeds. I know the parcel immediatly north and south of I-20 is included but I'm not sure on the the 2,196 ac. parcel. It is distinctly seperated from the 1,175 ac. parcel containing Bass Pro Shops. The major portion of the retail development will be in the area bounded by the Cahaba River and Highway 78/I-20. I'm sure we'll be seeing more to come over the coming months as things progress.
  14. Going back to the Leeds/Moody retail scene, anyone heard any more on the big development that was rumored at exit 144? I've heard now that Target is looking at exit 140 instead and I have to wonder if basically that whole development has moved to 140. I always thought that exit had more opportunity to become a regional draw for St. Clair County than at 144 because of the sheer amount of land available there.
  15. I keep hearing rumors of a large scale retail development in the Leeds/Moody area (besides the previously announced Grand River and Bass Pro Shops development) that include the likes of Publix, Target, etc. I'm hearing similar tenant mixes as what is seen in Colonial developments in Trussville, Fultondale, Alabaster and McCalla. Has anyone heard anything similar and if so exactly which exit is being looked at? Will it be Exit 140 with Bass Pro and turn that into a mega shopping destination for the Eastern Birmingham metro or is it going to be Exit 144 (although I'm not sure where there is enough land at this exit for something on the scale that Colonial does).
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