Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

Tuscaloosa Riverfront Development Moves Closer to Final City Approval

Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

Tuscaloosa Riverfront Development Moves Closer to Final City Approval

Article excerpt

TUSCALOOSA | Like the Planning and Zoning Commission almost a month before it, the Tuscaloosa City Council on Tuesday unanimously approved the plans for an approximately $42 million multiuse development for the former Tuscaloosa Chevrolet site along the Black Warrior River.

The vote came after Christopher Kritzman, a partner and developer for Chance Partners, the company behind the development, gave a more than 20-minute presentation outlining the research and vision that went into the creation of the 452-bed complex that will feature almost 40,000-square-feet of commercial space.

"We wanted to make sure this area was open and tied to the area," Kritzman said, noting the designs were crafted to ensure the project complements and blends in with downtown Tuscaloosa and the surrounding facilities, such as the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater.

"We really view this as downtown land, so we wanted to make sure there was a harmonious fit there," Kritzman said. "And we want it to be very walkable -- very urban -- with street-front restaurants and cafes."

Kritzman said Chance Partners spent nine months studying the area, reviewing city ordinances and researching other areas of the city's plans and residents before creating the project the company is calling "Riverfront Village."

The bedrooms will be divided among 201 living units of one-, two- and three-bedrooms in a combination of lease and for-sale spaces.

The retail space is planned on the bottom floors of four of the possible five buildings -- one of which will be four stories, while the others will be three stories or less -- on the 7.6-acre site.

Kritzman also said construction of the project will bring an estimated 268 jobs, $20 million in new local income and $1.95 million in local taxes and revenue.

Once complete, the development is expected to bring 65 new jobs, $4.6 million in local income and $800,000 in taxes and other revenue.

With the council's approval of the plans, the development is on pace to have much of the construction completed by July 2014. …

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