December 4, 2014
Originally coined as Big Spring Square during the initial planning and development process, this property is now CityCentre at Big Spring! For more information, visit:
City plans $70 million hotel/residential/retail project
October 21, 2014
Demolition of the shuttered downtown Holiday Inn is set to begin in November, and a 100-room boutique hotel, 200 residential units, retail property and restaurants will be built in its place.
Mayor Tommy Battle announced Monday afternoon that the city had selected the CRS Big Spring Development Team for the $70 million project out of four worthy developers. CRS is comprised of Central Realty Holdings of Greenville, S.C.; Strand Development Company of Myrtle Beach, S.C.; and RCP Companies in Huntsville.
The project – named Big Spring Square – is set to open in the summer of 2016.
“This project hits the mark on all of our desires and expectations for an urban lifestyle development that will include a hotel, restaurants, retail, residential and office space,” said Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle. “The project will add to the growing vitality of our central business district, and it will generate millions of dollars for our tax base.”
The City and CRS have entered into a 99-year lease for 7.38 acres on Williams Avenue, which provides the city some local control over the quality of the development. Once Phase I is complete in 2016, CRS Big Spring will have an option on Phase II, which includes the adjacent 2.38-acre site that houses the Scruggs Community Center and Jim Williams Aquatic Center.
A multi-level parking deck is also part of the plan. The City will be responsible for hardscape improvements along Monroe, Harvard and Williams, including new parking, crosswalks and other pedestrian-related amenities. The hardscape will add pedestrian connectivity to all adjoining uses, including the Von Braun Center, Big Spring Park, the new Harvard extension and Twickenham Square.
Rece Morgan, President/CEO of Central Realty in Greenville, said his company has been considering doing business here “for quite some time,” and he was able to sense similarities between Huntsville and his South Carolina home during the request for proposal process.
“Downtown Huntsville has enjoyed quite a renaissance over the past years, and we believe the unique mixed-use development we have proposed will be a significant addition to this trend and will bring brand new amenities to the downtown area,” Morgan said. “We look forward to delivering this development in 2016.”
Huntsville Planning Director Michelle Jordan says the multi-use concept is a strong model for today’s redevelopment needs.
“To maximize and energize urban environments, we need to think beyond single use properties, and that is what this development achieves,” she said. “This creates a more dynamic and interesting environment and provides a far greater return to the property and sales tax base.”