Liberty Towers at Midtown listed for sale in Birmingham

Liberty National Building
The historic Liberty Towers at Midtown is officially on the market. (Nathan Watson / Bham Now)

Liberty Towers at Midtown—formerly known as the Liberty National Building—has been listed for sale by owner Liberty Redemption LLC. Read on to learn more about the history of the building and what the future could hold for the Liberty Towers at Midtown.

One of Birmingham’s oldest office towers

Liberty National Building
(Nathan Watson / Bham Now)

According to the owners, the original 10-story structure was developed in 1925 and designed by Birmingham architecture firm Warren, Knight & Davis. After completion, the Liberty National Life Insurance Company purchased the building in 1931 to use as the company’s headquarters, dubbed the Liberty National Building.

Liberty National Building
A logo for the Liberty National Life Insurance Company still exists on the floor in the building’s lobby. (Nathan Watson / Bham Now)

Over the years, Liberty National continued to add to the building’s footprint. A six-story addition to the original tower was completed in 1952, and in 1971 a massive 16-story addition was completed, completely overshadowing the original structure.

Liberty National Building
This pedestal was once home to a 1/5th-scale bronze replica of the Statue of Liberty. (Nathan Watson / Bham Now)

In 1958, a 1/5th-scale bronze replica of the Statue of Liberty was placed on a pedestal on the top of the original building. The statue kept a watchful gaze over The Magic City for decades until the 1980s, when it was relocated to the entrance of the new Liberty Park residential and mixed-use subdivision in Vestavia Hills.

In 2010, Liberty National moved its Birmingham office—and 225 employees—to the 100 Concourse building in Hoover.

New hope for the Liberty National Building

Liberty National Building
(Nathan Watson / Bham Now)

In 2017, current owner William Rose redeemed the building out of foreclosure under Liberty Redemption LLC.

“The downside to redeeming a building out of foreclosure is you don’t have any right to go look at it before you buy it. When we bought it, the building wasn’t perfect—but we could tell that it had great bones. We decided to take it back to a blank canvas, doing what I called, ‘cosmetic demo.'”

William Rose, Owner, Liberty Redemption LLC
Liberty National Building
Three elevators inside the Liberty Towers at Midtown. (Nathan Watson / Bham Now)

Over the following years, Liberty Redemption LLC began pulling out drop ceilings, old wiring, old pipes and other parts that were no longer viable. The demo was designed to take out anything that wouldn’t be used moving forward.

“In my opinion, a building like Liberty is the best of both worlds, from an environmental standpoint. The steel, concrete and brick were all made many, many years ago, so now you have a structure that has virtually zero environmental output. Now, the next owner can put in state-of-the-art air conditioning, ventilation and other things.”

William Rose, Owner, Liberty Redemption LLC
Liberty National Building
Although the interior of the building may look a little rough around the edges, it has excellent bones and wonderfully preserved architectural elements. (Nathan Watson / Bham Now)

In addition, the new owners renamed the building to the Liberty Towers at Midtown, paying homage to the rapidly-growing Midtown district.

Listed on the market

Although William Rose had initially planned to develop the building himself, he decided to put the Liberty Towers at Midtown on the market. Mr. Rose worked with W. Dean Nix and Harbert Realty Services to list the building.

“I had known Dean and Harbert Realty Services for a long time, and although we interviewed a lot of brokers, we felt that Harbert Realty Services had the strongest connection to Birmingham and to the Liberty Towers at Midtown. We really wanted a brokerage firm that cared about Birmingham, as opposed to an out-of-town company that would look at this as just another listing.”

William Rose, Owner, Liberty Redemption LLC

What could be next for Liberty Towers at Midtown?

Liberty National Building
(Nathan Watson / Bham Now)

Now that the Liberty Towers at Midtown is on the market, the number one question is—what’s next?

“Liberty is well made and it’s in a great location. It could easily function as a variety of things. Multifamily, affordable housing, student housing and even retail and entertainment on the lower floors are all viable options. We think Liberty is a great opportunity for whatever the market will allow.”

William Rose, Owner, Liberty Redemption LLC
Liberty National Building
A view from the 16th floor of the Liberty Towers at Midtown. (Nathan Watson / Bham Now)

As a historic structure, the Liberty Towers at Midtown may qualify for both state and federal historic tax credits—plus, it’s located in an Opportunity Zone. In addition, the building is adjacent to the University of Alabama Birmingham (UAB) and directly across the street from the 20 Midtown mixed-use developments, with hundreds of luxury apartments as well as several retailers and restaurants.

“When I’m analyzing the Liberty Towers at Midtown, I look at three things. Number one, the condition of the building. It’s built so well, it’s basically a bomb shelter. Number two, location. Well, it’s located in Birmingham, a fantastic Southern city. Finally, number three, what’s going on around it? The 20 Midtown development is right across the street, and UAB is getting closer every day.”

William Rose, Owner, Liberty Redemption LLC

Click here to learn more about the Liberty Towers at Midtown or contact Harbert Realty Services at 205.323.2020

What do you want to see the Liberty Towers at Midtown redeveloped as? Tag us @bhamnow to let us know!

Nathan Watson
Nathan Watson

Senior Content Producer + Photographer

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