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Tuscaloosa Developments


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It's around Sixth Street and 23rd Avenue, I think.

This photo might help :


That's University Blvd running left-right at the bottom of the screen, and 6th street running parallel

behind city hall. The city hall annex that's under construction is to the right of existing city hall, where

it's just a surface parking lot in this photo.

Both blocks of old businesses across 6th street have pretty much been demolished, as

have two blocks just off the left of the photo (which will be the new Federal building plus a city park/plaza ).

I think the deck's going roughly where the "Spiller" sign is in this photo.

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The legendary Cotton Patch restaurant is closing at the end of March. The Eutaw restaurant, established in 1937, has been sold along with the 35 acres it sits on. The new owner won't say what he plans to do with the property, but there are rumors that a truck stop will be built there.

Unbelievable! The restaurant is apparently doing fine, but greed could be the undoing of over seven decades of tradition. I hope the new owner decides to keep it open.

The Cotton Patch is closing

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Yeah, that kind of took a lot of people off guard.

Their ad in the yellow pages: "To get a better piece of chicken,

you'd have to be a rooster !"

I imagine the new owner will want to keep some form of "Cotton Patch,"

since it has such strong name recognition in the area.

Other bits from recent T-News articles :

* Reworked "Riverwalk Place" development proposal (across from the library) could include a

9,000-square-foot Japanese steakhouse overlooking the river, next to the park pavilion.

* UA still in negotiations with Bryce (Honestly, I expect this one to go through. The main sticking

point right now appears to be finding an appropriate "New Bryce" location and funding.

UA currently has over 650 acres, and the existing Bryce property would add over 200 acres to that.

* UA postpones south end zone expansion of Bryant-Denny. This one surprised me, since they

already did the studies. If the team does well this fall, though, and the national economy recovers,

I expect this will heat back up.

* "Retreat at Lake Tamaha" development could eventually fill a 275-acre section of forest between

Nucor Steel and Holt (roughly between 25th Av E and the eastern bridge). The first phase would

be apartments or condos geared toward UA students. The more interesting bit here is that there

are hundreds and hundreds of undeveloped acres west of this site along Warner Pkwy (mostly

owned by Westervelt, I think).

* Work has begun on the new city fire station HQ (15th Street & Greensboro Avenue) , which frees

up the old Fire Station #1 on 6th Street downtown to be sold.

* City is in preliminary talks with YMCA and Focus (senior citizen activity center) about relocating their operations

from prominent locations in the heart of downtown to a possible new facility that could be constructed

by the city school board HQ in the less commercial part of downtown.

* Planned budget of new Federal building downtown is $65 million (city hoping to get the remainder

of the needed Federal funding within a year).

* Other "scoops," some not yet reported by the media:

* The proposed downtown riverfront amphitheater and relocated farmer's market would cost

about $13 million, with Red Mountain Entertainment of Birmingham booking the acts.

* According to the grapevine, the Army Corps of Engineers found a 24-acre site along the western bypass

to eventually relocate their operations. This would free up several acres of prime riverfront land across

from Queen City Park, immediately west of the planned Riverwalk Place development, and just east

of the office complex under construction (Bank of Tuscaloosa, Hunt Oil, JMF accountants, and Rosen law firm).

* Tuscaloosa County's population was 164,875 in 2000, and estimated at 177,906 in 2007.

Hale declined from 18,276 in 2000 to 18,111 in 2007, and Greene declined from 9,946 in 2000

to 9,201 in 2007. So, the 2007 estimate puts the metro area at 205,218.


Edited by DruidCity
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  • 3 months later...

One rumored possibility for the old Gayfers/Dillard's building is Burlington Coat Factory.

Honestly, I wonder if the best case scenario would be for a developer to buy not only McFarland Mall, but

also the shopping center just up the hill with the defunct Winn-Dixie, and demolish the whole lot of it,

with the possible exception of the stand-alone parcels Chili's and Books-a-Million.

At this point, I'd expect McFarland Mall or the Winn-Dixie center either to have difficulty attracting anything

but discount retailers, since that's mostly what they have now. However, if someone wiped the slate clean,

perhaps they could "reinvent" that part of town as something nicer ?

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