$40 million in capital funding means money for these 8 Birmingham projects, including new stairs for the downtown library

Birmingham, Alabama, Bards & Brews
Birmingham, Alabama, Bards & Brews
SamU’Elle Blackspeare speaks at Bards & Brews, at the Birmingham Public Library. Photo via Birmingham Public Library

The Birmingham City Council recently approved $40 million in general obligation warrants and refinanced bonds, and that means there’s capital funding for several projects throughout the city, like new stairs for the central library downtown. More projects are getting a cut of the money, too.

Birmingham, Alabama, Crossplex
The Fort Valley State University Lady Wildcats at the 2017 SIAC Basketball Tournament at Birmingham’s Crossplex. The Crossplex basketball courts are receiving an upgrade. Photo via Fort Valley State University Wildcats
How It Works

There are two parts to the financing: warrants and bonds. Both are debt securities issued by the city. The difference is that the city can issue warrants with city council approval only. For bonds there has to be a voter referendum.

In this case, the bonds are being refinanced and new warrants are being issued. The bond savings will remain in a reserve fund to be used for any future voted bond issue, while the warrants generate the $40 million.

Birmingham, Alabama, Legion Field
Legion Field stadium is located at 400 Graymont Avenue West in Birmingham. Lots of improvements are coming. Photo via City of Birmingham
The Projects
  • Boutwell improvements: $750,000
  • Bus Rapid Transit grant match: $20,000,000
  • BRT additional: $1,750,000
  • Central Library stairs: $1,500,000
  • Crossplex basketball courts: $600,000
  • Industrial/tech park: $4,600,000
  • Landfill cell: $7,500,000
  • Legion Field improvements: $2,250,000
  • Wylam Library additional funds: $800,000
Birmingham, Alabama, buses, bus, rapid transit, city council
The Bus Rapid Transit grant match comes in time for Birmingham to host the World Games in 2021. Photo via City of Birmingham, Strada
More Transit, Better Library

We all know the downtown library needs some love, and those poor escalators need a proper funeral. New stairs mean so much to library patrons (like me). I’ve been going to that location for over 30 years!

The Bus Rapid Transit line will give downtown commuters more options, as it will connect 25 neighborhoods in 10 miles, from Five Points to the west to Woodlawn in the east. This is one project that’s being completed in preparation for the 2021 World Games.

A young pilot modeling for the Southern Flight Museum calendar. Photo via southernmuseumofflight.org.
Barber Motorsports Tech Park

Last year the city approved an $4.6 million agreement with U.S. Steel to prepare 40 acres near Barber Motorsports for an industrial park. As a part of the deal, the city will relocate the Southern Museum of Flight and U.S. Steel will deed 24 acres to the city for its relocation.