Clanton to purchase property for proposed hotel project

Published 11:59 am Friday, September 9, 2022

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By JOYANNA LOVE |Managing Editor

The city of Clanton is purchasing a piece of property near Interstate 65, Exit 205 in connection with a developer bringing a hotel to town.

The property is located on 2000 Big M Boulevard, where Days Inn is located now.

“We have a closing date,” Mayor Jeff Mims said during a work session of the Clanton City Council on Sept. 8. “I think the 15th of this month. They will close that out, then they will have a month to get out.”

The Clanton City Council approved a motion on July 11 to open a $5 million line of credit and authorize the purchase of real property. The debt service will be interest-only payments for the first year with the principal and interest being paid off in the 48 months after that.

Mims said an agreement is being drafted, which would potentially have the hotel building developer Mansa Hospitality LLC demolish the existing building on the site and then purchase half of the property from the city.

“Then, the county and the city will give them some lodging tax to build that new hotel,” Mims said.

The Chilton County Commission has already approved a 3% lodging tax rebate for Mansa Hospitality LLC for up to $1 million or 10 years, whichever happens first.

Which hotel franchise the developer would be bringing to town has yet to be determined.

Mims said there would also be bids opened in the near future on properties that the city is selling.

At the voting session on Sept. 12, the annual budget for the next fiscal year will be considered. Mims said the city staff had worked on the budget for several weeks “trying to cut all we could cut.”

“I think we got them as far as we could get them without doing some serious cutting,” Mims said.

The council will also consider purchasing some pavers with a textured surface for portions of the sidewalk. Mims explained these help blind people to know they are about to leave the sidewalk and cross the street. Mims said he had several left over from a construction job in Montevallo and was going to sell them to the city for $100 each. Public Works director Jeff Zissette said the usual price for the pavers is $180 each.

An agreement to allow Cornerstone Flag Football to use the city park fields and add the city as an additional insurer will also be considered.

At the Sept. 8 work session, Mims also gave the council updates on meetings he had with the Secretary of Commerce, the Alabama Department of Transportation and state legislators.

“Poplar Springs Road is still going to be quite a while before they get started,” Mims said.

Making changes to an intersection in Lomax for safety reasons is also being researched. Accident reports for the past few years have been pulled and a traffic study will be conducted.

Grants are being pursued for a marker stating Clanton is the exact center of the state. The monument would be set at Corner Park downtown, if the grant is secured.