Clanton looking at dividing property with Farm Center

Published 5:29 pm Thursday, December 2, 2021

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By JOYANNA LOVE/ Managing Editor

Clanton is looking at options to subdivide the property it and the Chilton County Commission had conditionally deeded to the Alabama Agriculture and Exhibition Center Cooperative District for the Alabama Farm Center.

According to Clanton Mayor Jeff Mims, attorneys are looking into whether the property for the Alabama Farm Center site could be retained for that purpose, while giving the surrounding land of the original parcel back to the city and the county.

“We should know within two weeks if this is going to be a done deal,” Mims said.

The idea would be to develop community resources that could operate in conjunction with the Alabama Farm Center.

The limited warranty deed giving the Cooperative District the property was approved in March by both the Clanton City Council and the Chilton County Commission. However, it required the project to break ground by Feb. 10, 2022 and have 350,000 square feet of buildings “under roof” in 24 months to retain ownership of the property.

Alan Childress of the Clanton Industrial Development Board said Alfa/ Alabama Farmers Federation President Jimmy Parnell, Mims and Chilton County Commission Chairman Jimmie Hardee have been in discussions, and Alfa/Alabama Farmers Federation has decided the entire piece of property will not be needed to complete the Farm Center.

Woods said dividing the property into two with a separate development on the other piece of property could actually “complement and expedite” the development of the Alabama Farm Center.

“Within the next two years … it will start getting started, and people will get excited,” Mims said. “Other people will want to donate money and invest out there, and it will help them out.”

Woods said it made sense because the city would need to provide infrastructure to the site anyway.

The goal is to maximize the land and opportunities to incorporate ideas that the community has expressed interest in, such as a sports complex.

Under this idea, the property that would be used for the Farm Center would be leased to Alfa/ Alabama Farmers Federation, according to Mims.

Mims said the city and the county as well as the Chilton County Chamber of Commerce had been working well together and starting to get momentum for making changes to benefit the city and county.