The next chapter has arrived for The Battery, also known as the old BEBCO building, in Southside. Property developer Ward Neely will open an event space by the end of May 2019 that can accommodate up to 200 people. While it’s still undergoing renovations, Bham Now got a sneak peek. See what we found!
Built circa 1910, The Battery once served as a battery warehouse and engine service shop for the Birmingham Electric Battery Company, or BEBCO. The 5,000-square-foot event space is on the upper floor of a two-story structure, located at the corner of 2nd Avenue South and 22nd Street.
Maybe you’ve already checked out the buzzy tenants on the first floor. They include Wasabi Juan’s, Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken, Birmingham District Brewing Co., Original B’ham Apparel Co. and Birmingham Pedal Tours. The second-floor boutique fitness studio True40 is next door.
3 Things I Love About the Event Space
When Neely began redeveloping the BEBCO building a year ago, he pegged the large open space on the second floor as a hip office space. Now that most of The Battery’s tenants are open for business, his vision has shifted to an event space for weddings and other major occasions. Here’s why I love the new addition.
1. Historic charm … with stunning views.
Early 1900s architectural details include exposed brick walls and heavy-duty wooden floors. Massive windows flood the event space with natural light.
Look out the windows and it gets even better, because outside is an amazing view of downtown Birmingham. Definitely event worthy.
2. You can make the event space into whatever you want.
“It’s completely open in the sense that you can bring in your own planner, caterer, chairs and tables—your everything.”Neely
In the future, The Battery may work with a rental company or have its own tables and chairs. “But to start,” Neely said, “it’s going to be rented space that you can do pretty much whatever you want with.”
In other words, it’s carte blanche for a dream wedding. Now all you need is the dress.
3. It’s like a mini Birmingham.
Many times, big events mean out-of-towners who need suggestions about what to do and how to get around in Birmingham. The Battery makes that part easy.
Check out everything you can do in this historic building.
Settle in for the after party. Saunter downstairs to drink local beer at Birmingham District Brewing Co. or hang out in the outdoor courtyard.
Stock up on fun Magic City souvenirs. Head over to Original B’ham Apparel Co. for t-shirts, hats, decals and other nifty swag.
Try the local eats. Wasabi Juan’s is as local as it gets, and the sushi burritos are a must-try. Or, to satisfy a hankering for fried chicken, Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken is the ticket. The bone-in breast is my favorite.
Take a ride around the city. The Battery is home to Birmingham Pedal Tours. This company offers pedal-powered group bikes for party tours and a fleet of pedicabs for transportation. Here are some fun ways to incorporate them into your event:
- Brewery tour for a bachelorette or bachelor party the night before. Opt for the pedal-powered trolley or tiki hut; everyone pedals.
- Open-air sightseeing adventures around downtown Birmingham for guests during the event. Opt for the pedicab; only the driver pedals.
- Pedicab rides to transport the wedding party from the ceremony to the reception.
- Post-reception getaway pedicab for the happy couple.
Your event at The Battery is home base. There’s less chance of anyone getting lost when most of their activities are centralized. Now, I know what you’re thinking. You’ve got that one friend who lives by their morning workout class. The answer: True40. Then they can grab a post-workout snack at Magic City Nutrition, opening soon.
Location and Parking
Find The Battery at 2201 2nd Avenue South, Birmingham, Alabama 35233. Valet service is recommended for events. (The 42 onsite parking spots must stay open for other businesses and customers.)
In addition to public street parking, Birmingham Parking Authority’s Deck 8 at 2021 3rd Avenue South is only a 0.2-mile stroll away.
To save the date for your next event at The Battery, call Ward Neely at 205-757-2005 or email email@example.com.