HOOVER, Ala. (WIAT) — The Hoover City Council voted 5-2 Monday to approve an ordinance for a new multi-use development off Riverchase Parkway by I-65.
The development plan includes a medical center with a surgical and diagnostic center, single and multi-family homes, retail space and a hotel. Hoover Mayor Frank Brocato said this wellness development will bring in $2.5 billion dollars to the city with $29 million of that going toward schools.
“We’re excited about it. It’s a mixed-use development that will bring lots of people to our area and just kind of reinvigorate the Riverchase business section,” Brocato said.
The Riverchase Residential Association (RRA) said the community’s two biggest concerns surrounding this new development are the impacts it would have on traffic and schools.
“It’s an aging neighborhood and we worked really hard to keep it up and make it beautiful,” said Joy Patterson, RRA president. “I feel like this project will just open the door to make it even more exciting.”
The RRA said it’s had multiple meetings among neighbors and with city officials and project developers to answer questions and do the research needed to ease their minds about the development.
“Until the project really takes fruition, we won’t really know but I feel like at this point, it’s just a great thing for Riverchase,” Patterson said.
Hoover Superintendent Kevin Maddox answered the council’s question regarding the impact this development would have on schools. Maddox said an estimated 88 students would be added to the Spain Park district, a number he said will minimally impact the schools.
“We’re monitoring the Hoover High School feeder system, that’s just a tremendous amount of growth that’s taking place on the western side of Hoover,” Brocato said. “The Spain Park feeder system can afford to have many, many more students.”
As far as traffic impacts, Brocato says a traffic study has been done and there will not be a large change to traffic in the area as Riverchase Parkway was built to sustain thousands of people driving in and out for work daily.
“As a matter of fact, there will be a huge reduction most of the time and then there will be some peak hours there where you might see an increase,” Brocato said.
Hoover councilmembers Sam Swiney and Dr. Casey Middlebrooks voted no on this development. They were unavailable for an interview following the council meeting.