City of Montgomery doing away with downtown small business incubator

City of Montgomery doing away with downtown small business incubator

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - The City of Montgomery will do away with its small business incubator downtown, at the corner of Commerce and Tallapoosa Streets.

"We will dismantle the building, take it apart and then repurpose it somewhere else," explained Steve Jones, General Services Director for the City of Montgomery. "We're looking at maybe the skate park at Gunter, and we've had some private investors say 'hey, I'd like to look at repurposing it for my little business'."

The City built the small retail space in 2011. It sits on prime real estate across the street from the Renaissance hotel, close to the river front and the entertainment district.

The idea was to provide a space where businesses could get a jump start, move into the building on a temporary basis, allow them to grow, and in time they would move to a larger location. "It has done its purpose and it's been a very successful program," said Jones.

Soon, the grassy area where the small business incubator sits will become a destination green space.

"A lot of people don't know that we have the original street car from 1897 behind Union Station," Jones said. "It's designed to have people come in, sit in it, look at, but I bet 90 percent of Montgomerians don't know even know it's here. So the plan is to take that and move it to this green space."

Jones believes it's a perfect fit for the City's vision for Downtown Montgomery. "One of the things we've done downtown is taken some of these famous Montgomery items that have been hidden and put them on display," Jones explained. "Over at city hall, in the Mason Corner where we found the time capsule, we got some things displayed there, we moved Hank Williams statue downtown, we got the Wright Flyer up on the hill to symbolize the 1910 Wright Flyers."

CC Daiquiris will be the small business incubator's final tenant. That lease ends at the end of May. The owners of The Bullet food truck say the decision to end its agreement with the City of Montgomery was mutual, and they are working on plans for the next phase.

On A Roll, who has been operating out of The Bullet since 2014, has announced it will end that operation March 31st.  In an Instagram post, the owners of On A Roll say this is not an end, but it is, just the beginning of our deliciousness all around this fine city.

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