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Alley Project

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A "New Orleans-style 'Grocer's Alley'" will be built using an existing alley off of Tallapoosa Street and a path that will be torn through a building on Commerce Street. The alley will include restaurants and retail, and will connect the new hotel and convention center to the baseball stadium and Riverwalk. The proposed cost of the alley is $1.1 million (probably higher now) and will include contributions from private developers. The project is likely to be delayed until after the new hotel and convention center expansion are completed next year.

GrocersAlley.jpg

GrocersAlley2.jpg

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Its a good idea, but they have to be careful how its executed as the stores are very visible and its not a shopping area. Probably needs a restaurant in the same area or at one end to attract people and should be covered at least by store awnings if not a clear cover over whole area so as to get people in during t-storms. I would think that area would offer good shade too.

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Its a good idea, but they have to be careful how its executed as the stores are very visible and its not a shopping area. Probably needs a restaurant in the same area or at one end to attract people and should be covered at least by store awnings if not a clear cover over whole area so as to get people in during t-storms. I would think that area would offer good shade too.

I agree it should be executed carefully and not rushed, so that the restaurants and retail establishments don't fall on their faces. It will be centrally located in the riverfront area, between the hotel/convention center and the stadium and brew pub; and two big parking decks will be in adjacent blocks at either end. The Commerce St. entrance will be next door to the new children's science museum and in the same block with the Hank Williams museum. This thing will be awesome if they get it right.

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These photos of the site were taken in May 2007.

Tallapoosa Street entrance

GrocerAlley9.jpg

Commerce Street entrance (across from the new Renaissance Hotel) may be punched through this storefront (just a guess)

GrocerAlley1.jpg

rear of that building

GrocerAlley8.jpg

Interior of the alley

GrocerAlley4.jpg

GrocerAlley3.jpg

GrocerAlley6.jpg

GrocerAlley5.jpg

Maybe bricks will be laid around these old rails to make the floor

GrocerAlley2.jpg

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Could be great. Keep in mind European shopping streets with a touch of Nawlins. That's what I'm thinkin.

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Could be great. Keep in mind European shopping streets with a touch of Nawlins. That's what I'm thinkin.

Absolutely! Shaded outdoor dining during the day and a nice courtyard atmosphere at night with a blues club, an Irish pub and a piano bar... This has the potential to establish a hell of an entertainment district with the brew pub and several hotel restaurants and bars a block away. Other clubs are within 3 blocks or so up Commerce and along lower Dexter and Montgomery.

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One of the alley property owners is adding a balcony in the alley.

Alley-constr1.jpg

Alley-constr2.jpg

View from the proposed alley across Commerce St. to the new hotel

Alley-hotel.jpg

View from the alley eastward along Tallapoosa St., toward Riverwalk Stadium

Alley-eastview.jpg

View from the alley to the west along Tallapoosa toward Commerce

Alley-westview.jpg

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Construction has begun -- one of the alley property owners is adding a balcony.

Alley-constr1.jpg

Alley-constr2.jpg

View from the proposed alley across Commerce St. to the new hotel

Alley-hotel.jpg

View from the alley to the east along Tallapoosa St.

Alley-eastview.jpg

View from the alley to the west along Tallapoosa toward Commerce

Alley-westview.jpg

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Mayor Bright says the alley is just a month or so away from construction. Property owners have all agreed in principle to sign over part of their alleyway property to the city. The alley will cost around $1.3 million, funded by the city and Montgomery County. Officials hope to get it done before the new hotel and convention center opens early next year.

WSFA-TV: New Developments In Montgomery's Efforts To Revitalize Downtown

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That looks like such a cool project. I'm gonna be goin through MGM on my way to Mobile this coming week. So, maybe I'll be able to see it.

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I think I was off by a building on the Commerce Street entranceway to the alley. It looks like the building just south of the future Children's science museum will be the alley entrance. Work is under way to clear the interior of that building, as pictured below.

Alley_inside.jpg

Building exterior, from Commerce St.

Alley_Commerce1.jpg

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It appears that this will be a two-story balcony in the alley. A restaurant or bar overlooking the alley would really be cool.

Alley_7-28.jpg

Balcony8-12b.jpg

Balcony8-12c.jpg

Balcony8-12d.jpg

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Construction will start soon on the Alleyway Project in downtown Montgomery, where private investors will put as much as $20 million into renovations. The city will invest about $1 million from TIF funding. The alleyway itself will be deeded to the city, which will be responsible for its upkeep. The buildings will belong to private investors.

The city plans to take the water tower that straddles two buildings, fix it up and use it as an entrance to the 300-foot-long alleyway. People will walk under the water tower to get to the revitalized area that will hopefully include an art gallery, a jewelry store, a clothing store, gift shops, a gourmet coffee shop, a pizza parlor, restaurants and piano and jazz bars. There also is interest in turning upper level spaces into loft apartments.

Montgomery Advertiser: Alleyway could be the place to be

Photo gallery: Alleyway Project

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Work began on the alleyway project last week! Fences have been installed at the Commerce St and Tallapoosa St entrances to the alleyway.

Developer Jerry Kyser is so convinced that the alleyway will be a success that he's already invested in renovating a building overlooking the alleyway and cleaning out another. Kyser is in negotiations with a well-known Alabama restaurant for his building fronting Tallapoosa Street.

New Developments On Montgomery's Alleyway Project

Alleyway02.jpg

I may have been right initially about the Commerce Street entrance.

Alleyway01.jpg

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Work is underway on the Commerce St entrance to the alley. Nice to see that the building is getting facade improvements as well.

Alley_Commerce2.jpg

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Framing underway for the new facade at the entrance on Commerce St

Alley_010.jpg

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Photo update 9/19/08:

Commerce St. entrance to the alleyway

Alley_011.jpg

The building immediately to the left is under renovation. According to a gentleman at the site, the first floor will have a bar facing the actual alley (to the rear) and another one (part of a restaurant fronting Commerce St I believe) facing the entranceway from Commerce St. The upper three floors will be condominiums.

Restaurant_Condos.jpg

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The Advertiser ran a front page story today about the Alleyway project. Property owners have building renovations and modifications underway, and the city is now working on its part of the alley construction.

Down the Alley: Entertainment district set to open in early '09 (with video)

Photo gallery

Current Alleyway plan - Alleyway.pdf

Alleyway.gif

Source: Brown Chambless Architects

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Photo update 10/5/08:

Construction underway in the alley

AlleyConstr1.jpg

Alley entrance on Commerce St

AlleyEntrance3.jpg

AlleyEntrance1.jpg

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The Advertiser ran a piece today on the prospects of the Alleyway project and downtown nightlife in general. The writer seems overly skeptical, and doesn't seem to be aware of the way that downtowns are being revitalized around the country.

Alleyway to test future of nightlife

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10/19/08 photos:

Commerce St. entrance

Alleyway10-19b.jpg

Alleyway10-19a.jpg

Three above-ground levels of balcony now on the building at the right rear of the alley

Alleyway10-19c.jpg

Alleyway10-19d.jpg

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11/23/08:

Alley_11-23a.jpg

Alley_11-23b.jpg

A water tower is going to be hung over the Tallapoosa St. entrance to the alley. I believe this is it, and that the concrete foundations for the framework are visible in the foreground of the photos above.

WaterTower1.jpg

Alley_11-23c.jpg

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