North Jefferson News, Gardendale, AL

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May 21, 2013

Gardendale council buys land for new fire station

Incentives for new Panera Bread location approved

GARDENDALE — The Gardendale City Council took the first steps Monday night toward the building of an additional fire station.

During their regular session, the council approved the purchase of two adjacent parcels on Fieldstown Road that will eventually become the city’s second firehouse, according to councilman Greg Colvert.

“This is something the city has needed for several years, but we haven’t had the initiative to get things moving in the right way,” Colvert said. “We’ve got one more station to do after this one.”

The parcels are in the 1600 block of Fieldstown Road. One, owned by Bill Fields, will be purchased for $158,000. The other, owned by W.C. and Sharon Cornelius, will sell for $33,000.

The Fields parcel will be used for the station at first, with a house on the property to be remodeled and used to house crews while a new structure would be built for equipment. The Cornelius parcel would be used later to build a new station, while leaving the original intact during construction.

The council also approved an incentive package for Gardendale Retail, LLC and a new Panera Bread restaurant to be built on Fieldstown Road, at the location of the old Shoney’s restaurant.

According to architectural drawings submitted to the council, the Shoney’s structure would be razed and replaced with a new building that would have room for three businesses. Panera would occupy one space.

The incentive package will rebate half of the city sales taxes collected by Panera over 10 years.

In other business, the council:

  • Approved alcohol sales licenses for the new CVS Drugs at Main Street and Fieldstown Road, and the new Dollar General store on Phillips Drive at Fieldstown Road
  • Gave first reading to an amendment to the newly-revised city zoning ordinances, which restores the original requirement that C-2 and C-3 commercial buildings be clad with masonry covering at least 70 percent of exterior surfaces
  • Gave first reading to the proposed rezoning of 3271 Decatur Highway at the Turnberry Ridge development, changing from RT-4 (townhouses) to RG (garden homes)
  • Authorized Merchants Capital to issue long-term debt for the new Public Safety Center in the amount of $3.3 million, a long-planned move which would replace money borrowed on the city’s existing line of credit
  • Renewed a lease agreement for $500 a month with the new owner of a tract of land used by the city for brush storage
  • Renewed a five-year agreement with AT&T for the use of city right-of-way for U-verse broadband service
  • Authorized the public works department to cut weeds at five properties deemed in violation of the city’s weed ordinance
  • Hired two part-time summer workers for the library.

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