Selma prepares for facelift

Posted by Cody Holyoke -bio | email

SELMA, AL (WSFA) - A block of bedraggled buildings stand at the foot of the Edmund Pettis Bridge, weathered and in need of renovation.

That work could be coming soon.

Thursday, developers released a plan for the incoming Selma Interpretive Center: turn back the clock to 1910.

"It's significant for the city.  A period that it was thriving, and wanting to restore that energy, too," explained A. J. Page, the project manager.

Meeting with city leaders and Voting Rights Trail advocates, planners laid out their vision on paper--illustrating the needed changes and the final product.

"This, of course, will be finally moving into something that would be visual, so I'm very excited," said Charles Johnson, a representative with Selma Friends of the Selma to Montgomery Voting Rights Trail.

"We look forward to the continuation to the kind of interest that's being shown here," said Dr. F. D. Reese.

City workers say about $700,000 to $800,000 is available for the project right now, which may only work on the corner building.

The facades on the other parts of the center would come after.

Still, with a growing riverfront and rich history, city leaders remain optimistic.

"With all these pieces coming together, we can really change Selma. And create our tourism, our population, as well as our tax base," said Mayor George Evans.

Developers and the city hope to have bids in on the project by the beginning of December.

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