Hoover and football
Before I moved to Birmingham I thought of Hoover, AL as just the high school football stronghold of the state, maybe because of that TV show from a few years ago. Hoover is a thriving suburb of Birmingham, a small city with momentum that is continuing to see a surge of new housing, business centers and retail development.
One of the most livable cities in the US
Last fall USA Today rated Hoover 17th of 50 most livable US cities. The article stated that Hoover was the wealthiest city in Alabama. What started as a sleepy suburb, nine miles north of Birmingham, incorporated in 1967, has exploded into a proper city with a population of nearly 85,000.
There’s a new mayor in town
New Mayor Frank Brocato seems to have high ambitions for his city…not just retail and housing development, but businesses headquartered there such as Iberia Bank and a company we recently reported on, McLeod Software.
The City of Hoover needs to map out a master plan to give the city direction. Planning also provides a catalyst for revitalization. Frank believes planning allows Hoover as a city to be proactive, identifying vulnerable parcels of land throughout Hoover by working with landowners and affected neighborhoods, recruiting quality residential and commercial development for structured growth. From Brocato for Mayro literature.
One new development that is about to break ground in Hoover is in the Ross Bridge mixed-use development. Terra Equities is leading the development of a city center type retail, dining and office center that they say will act as a community hub or gathering place for all Hoover citizens.
It will be 19,000 SF at the main entrance to the Ross Bridge residential area. The project is supposed to completed in the summer of 2018.
Another Hoover development in the works is Stadium Trace Village. The 44-acre mixed-use development will be at the intersection of I-459, AL-150 and Stadium Trace Pkwy along John Hawkins Parkway.
New York-based Broad Metro LLC is planning the site. Their press releases hint at a nationally known market known for fresh farm produce and natural foods being one of the anchors (could it be another While Foods?) and plenty of medical providers as tenants as well.
What is an experimental store? Stadium Trace will have some, and hotels and dining to accommodate all the visitors to the community who visit for sports events at the Met Sports Stadium, (Home to the SEC Baseball Tournament) Finley Sports Complex and Convention Center and Hoover High School.
Broad Metro LLC reports that this development will only enhance the infrastructure for that part of Hoover. The plans call for winding walking and bike paths lined by native plants and trees. Completion is scheduled for late 2018.
Growth and momentum
A residential development in Hoover that has been in the local press is Trace Crossings. This community will add about 340 acres and over 500 home sites.
Urban Sprawl or Progress?
Is this just more urban sprawl, with traffic headaches and strains on existing resources, or is it it meaningful, progressive growth that will make the area even more viable as an economic and residential center?
There are proponents on both sides of this argument. Let us know your thoughts.