Southtown Court demolition begins, clearing the way for new mixed-use housing development [Photos]

Southtown Court Demo
Demolition begins on the historic Southtown Court in Birmingham. Photo via Nathan Watson for Bham Now

On December 17th, community members, officials and representatives from the City of Birmingham and Jefferson County Commission gathered on a drizzly Friday afternoon to witness the Housing Authority of the Birmingham District (HABD) begin the long-awaited demolition of Birmingham’s Southtown Court. After demolition, which is expected to be complete by May 2022, construction will begin on a new mixed-use housing and commercial development.

Demolition Begins on Southtown Court

Southtown Court Demo
City officials, community members and media gathered to witness demolition begin at Southtown Court on Friday, December 17th. Photo via Nathan Watson for Bham Now

Earlier this year, Southside Development Co., the developer partner of the Housing Authority of the Birmingham District (HABD), began the process of clearing Southtown Court ahead of demolition. Demolition of the aging, 80-year housing development includes:

  • 55 buildings with 455 obsolete dwelling units of public housing
  • 10 non-dwelling units (including a community building, management building, daycare building and maintenance buildings)
  • Two “shotgun” style residential dwellings on an adjacent lot
Southtown Court
Two “shotgun” style houses were demolished. Photo via Nathan Watson for Bham Now

“Since its initial development in 1941, Southtown Court has significantly improved the quality of life for low-income families in Birmingham. While it has served clients for more than eight decades, we’re excited to transform Southtown Court once more in an effort to provide families with modern, affordable housing and the Birmingham community with a new hub for business and amenities.”

David A. Northern, Sr., President & CEO, Housing Authority of the Birmingham District (HABD)

Redevelopment Plans

Southtown
Conceptual render of the Southtown redevelopment. Render by Gensler.

According to a press release from the Housing Authority of the Birmingham District, demolition is expected to be completed by May 2022. Once demolition is complete, work will begin on the redevelopment of Southtown Court, transforming the 22-acre site into a mixed-use housing & commercial development.

“The demolition of Southtown marks an important inflection point for how we envision projects that include public housing. We will witness a transformation from utilitarian housing into a fully faceted community with access to all of the basic amenities that enhance quality of life, including multimodal transportation infrastructure.”

Darrel O’Quinn, Councilor, District 5, Birmingham City Council

The redevelopment will begin with the construction of 280 affordable housing housing for low-income families and seniors, while future plans include market-rate apartment and commercial buildings with space for groceries, retail and hotel space. In addition, the new development of Southtown Court can be expected to exceed 1.3 Million square feet, including 3.5 acres of green space and parking sites that have the capacity to accommodate 2,500 cars.

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Nathan Watson

Senior Content Producer with Bham Now | Originally from Tennessee, Nathan moved to The Magic City after graduating from Birmingham-Southern College. Nathan is passionate about recognizing Birmingham's history and is thrilled to learn more about the big things planned for The Magic City's future.

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