Results in from study to determine future of Russell headquarter - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

Results in from study to determine future of Russell headquarters in Alex City

(Source: WSFA 12 News) (Source: WSFA 12 News)
ALEXANDER CITY, AL (WSFA) -

For decades, the Russell Textile Corporate office was synonymous with strength, longevity and very much part of the fabric of Alex City. That is until the company closed years ago due to changing times.

Mayor Jim Nabors saw an opportunity to turn the building into the public safety building combining the police and fire departments under one roof.

"It's a love affair with the community, especially with the older portion of our community," said mayor Jim Nabors.

The mayor had a study done in May at a cost of $7,500 and the results were disappointing. On several pages, the architectural firm suggested tearing down 20,000 square feet and reducing the building to its original form, and that's not all; the firm also suggested the front should become the back while the backside of the office serves as the new entrance. This is not what Nabors had in mind, particularly when you factor in the cost of everything, which came out around $3 million.

"The expense of doing that was probably more than the city could justify," Nabors said.

It's a disappointment to police chief Jay Turner who was hoping to move the police department out of what is now the old city hall. Although declared historic, the building is cramped and needs major repair work.

"We're going to have to address several issues with one is storage," said Turner.

Mayor Nabors says the concept isn't necessarily dead but has been placed on the back burner for now. City leaders have agreed to buy 17 acres behind the building for $360,000.

"A lot of work to do there to make that economic development work," said mayor Nabors.

For now, the relic of the past stands as is:  largely empty and unattended for another day. 

Mayor Nabors says he plans to form a committee to generate ideas of what can be done with the building.

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