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  #61  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2007, 3:11 PM
nimsjus nimsjus is offline
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From the Register... I can't visualize this building, but I am all for an old building being put to good use. The foriegners downtown will probably lead to some really neat stuff setting up shop down there. I would not be surprised if unique ethnic restaraunts pop up downtown to feed some of these foriegn workers. I think that area will also be a prime redevelopemnt area when the bring back broad project is completed.

Former orphanage to house foreign hotel workers
Old Protestant Orphans Home on Dauphin Street to be renovated as dorm for Battle House, Riverview employees Sunday, February 18, 2007By KATHY JUMPERReal Estate Editor
Aformer orphanage at 911 Dauphin St., will soon be home to foreign workers employed at the Battle House Hotel and Riverview Plaza Hotel on Royal Street downtown, according to developers and hotel officials.

Investors have a contract to buy the circa 1843 former Protestant Orphans Home on Dauphin and Broad streets, according to Ray Hix, a local attorney and one of the buyers. The sale should close this week, he said.

The building will be renovated to house at least 60 workers in a dormitory-style set up, he said. He and his business partner, Haymes Snedecker, have a contract to lease the housing to Point Clear Hotels & Resorts, which manages the Battle House, Riverview Plaza Hotel and Grand Hotel Marriott Resort, Golf Club & Spa in Point Clear.

PCH is an affiliate of the Retirement Systems of Alabama, which owns the hotels. RSA has signed with Marriott Corp. to put its four-star Renaissance brand on the 250-room Battle House and 375-room Riverview.

PCH has struggled to find enough locals to staff the 250-room Battle House Hotel, which opens for guests on May 1, according to Keith Schmitt, vice president of human resources for PCH.

In fact, the manager of the 405-room Grand Hotel recruited workers from foreign countries last year to fill positions, according to RSA.

PCH, which has hired workers from South America, Eastern Europe and Malasia or the Pacific Rim, will bring less than 100 foreign workers here during the year, with the number changing depending on the season, Schmitt said.

RSA's three hotels have a total of 1,100 rooms, and will require as many as 2,000 full, part-time and seasonal workers to run all three operations, according to RSA.

The majority of the foreign workers will start arriving in Mobile in mid-May in anticipation of the building being ready, Schmitt said.

"This building was ideal due to the location," he added.
The l22,000-square-foot, vacant building is on the National Register for Historic Places, according to Hix.

Architect Russell Washer of WHL Architecture in Fairhope designed the renovations, which will start within the next 10 days, Hix said.

The investors met with the neighbors, the Mobile Historic Development Commission, and the city's planning staff and all have been supportive, according to Hix.

The two-story, federal-style brick structure is built like a fort, said John Sledge of the Historic Development Commission. "Other than some tree damage from Hurricane Katrina, they don't have a lot of exterior work to do. It's on a beautiful lot, about 2 acres, with great trees. We're all for it."

The building will house workers for its two hospitality training programs and foreign workers in the United States on 10-month visas, according to Schmitt. The training programs include a summer work and travel plan for college students on summer break; and Trained USA, an 18-month plan for youth with a college degree or a certificate in hospitality who want to work in the hospitality industry.

PCH sends staff to each country to interview the workers face-to-face and to make sure they have a good grasp of the English language and meet the requirements to work in the hotel business, Schmitt said.

"Most of them want to come to the States and learn our management practices," he said. The workers are here on a temporary basis, and many will work in the hospitality industry when they return home, he said.

The program is approved by the U.S. Department of Labor, Immigration and Naturalization Service and Homeland Security, he said.

The Labor Department sets a prevailing wage rate based on the area where the foreign students will be employed, with employers required to pay at least that amount, according to Schmitt. "But in every case we pay more," he said. "It's not cheap labor coming in."

The students bring a diverse population to the community, according to Schmitt.

"It's a neat blending of these cultures."
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  #62  
Old Posted Feb 20, 2007, 3:27 AM
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its about 1/2 block from broad on dauphin - big brick structure. On the left leaving downtown.
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  #63  
Old Posted Feb 20, 2007, 1:36 PM
nimsjus nimsjus is offline
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Just behind the Red Cross building? I still cant picture it, but I wanted to look for it next time I was down there.
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  #64  
Old Posted Feb 20, 2007, 10:28 PM
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Originally Posted by nimsjus View Post
Just behind the Red Cross building? I still cant picture it, but I wanted to look for it next time I was down there.
It's west of Broad Street about a block or so on the left. It sits back from the street and is right where St. Francis connects with Dauphin to form the 4-laned street, so you may not have noticed it when driving on Dauphin towards the west.
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  #65  
Old Posted Feb 25, 2007, 3:55 PM
nimsjus nimsjus is offline
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They hid the weekly real estate briefs when they revamped Al.com, but I had assumed they weren't running them. I saw these tow things from the last two weeks and noone has mad mention of either.
Hancock Bank has leased the first floor of St. Emanuel Place at the corner of St. Emanuel and Dauphin streets, according to Rebecca Byrne of White-Spunner & Associates , who represented the bank. The bank will move to the 3,651-square-foot space in April. Building owner Tilmon Brown of JTB Group is finishing 11 loft apartments on the second and third floors, and those will be leased.
and from the same link...
Developer Bo Wilson of Mobile says he has not decided what he will do with the former Gayfers store building on Dauphin Street. He is an investor in Island Investments , whose offer to buy the building for $1.2 million was accepted by the school board. Wilson has developed numerous condominium projects, including Legacy Key and Vista Bella in Orange Beach. The developer has 90 days to inspect the building before making a final decision to buy. An earlier offer for the same amount fell through
http://www.al.com/business/press-reg...620.xml&coll=3
At least we know some part of the St. Emanuel project is moving because I doubt this Hancock Bank will be willing to sit around and wait for snails pace progress like we have seen on the loft portion.

Bob Baumhower , the owner of Wings Sports Grilles , has moved to office space in Fort Conde Village off Royal Street while working on plans to renovate the former Roussos restaurant building at 166 S. Royal St. He is leasing and has an option to purchase the 15,000-square-foot restaurant building.
http://www.al.com/business/press-reg...890.xml&coll=3
Nice to see that building won't just sit empty. I assume he was saying they would use that building for their offices. I know that building is pretty vast on the inside so it seems like quite a bit of office space. I wish they would put a restaraunt back in that building. Rousso's was such a landmark downtown. I wonder how business is across the bay?
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  #66  
Old Posted Feb 25, 2007, 6:13 PM
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The biggest thing in my opinion from the Jumper column were the plans of the Atlanta developer to put an M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Daphne. That is big news in my book.
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  #67  
Old Posted Feb 25, 2007, 9:13 PM
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Could anyone scan those pics in the paper from a few weeks ago that showed other renderings of what Government Plaza could have looked like? I could have done it, but I lost that edition of the paper already. It showed renderings of government plaza that could have been a 26 story building, and other things like that.

Also, I thought this was an amusing exerpt from soundoff yesterday concerning building condos on the old courthouse annex site:

"We already have a government building downtown. It looks like R2-D2 holding hands with his clone. Chastang,Nodine, and Dean want to force courthouse condos next door. Design the condos to look like Darth Vader's helmet and connect the two structures with a giant,light-saber catwalk. It would be so Mobile."

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  #68  
Old Posted Feb 25, 2007, 10:34 PM
nimsjus nimsjus is offline
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The biggest thing in my opinion from the Jumper column were the plans of the Atlanta developer to put an M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Daphne. That is big news in my book.
Im one of those Estern Shore/West Mobile is the devil kind of people... Just kidding. I just wish spralw wasn't the way of the world. What is an " M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. I'm in the medical field and have had friends with cancer and some how I don't know what this is and why it is a big deal. Please elaborate?
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  #69  
Old Posted Feb 26, 2007, 4:28 AM
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Seems like there are many cancer places popping up in the Mobile Metro. I think Providence Hospital (they have partnered to bring the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center to Mobile Metro) wants to compete with Mobile Infirmary and USA cancer research center.
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  #70  
Old Posted Feb 26, 2007, 6:22 AM
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Read more about them here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Uni..._Cancer_Center

If this is true, it is a big development. Definitely not just Real Estate page potential.

I'm betting it is name only though, as this apparently would only be the second "M.D. Anderson Cancer Center" outside of Houston. Maybe there was a typographical error or something, but this is too good to be true. At the least, the amount of research going on in the area will be at Birmingham's level if not better in the years to come if this comes to fruition. At the most (and it is a fully functioning hospital, et cetera), the health care that locals will experience will be spectacularly enhanced. Instead of traveling 4+ hours to get to a comprehensive cancer center, locals can drive right into Daphne right off the interstate 15 minutes from Downtown Mobile.
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  #71  
Old Posted Feb 26, 2007, 12:54 PM
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Here's a shot of the RSA Tower. Sunday was a great day for photos.

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  #72  
Old Posted Feb 26, 2007, 3:53 PM
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Originally Posted by SouthSky View Post
Read more about them here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Uni..._Cancer_Center

If this is true, it is a big development. Definitely not just Real Estate page potential.

I'm betting it is name only though, as this apparently would only be the second "M.D. Anderson Cancer Center" outside of Houston. Maybe there was a typographical error or something, but this is too good to be true. At the least, the amount of research going on in the area will be at Birmingham's level if not better in the years to come if this comes to fruition. At the most (and it is a fully functioning hospital, et cetera), the health care that locals will experience will be spectacularly enhanced. Instead of traveling 4+ hours to get to a comprehensive cancer center, locals can drive right into Daphne right off the interstate 15 minutes from Downtown Mobile.
I hate that its in Daphne.
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  #73  
Old Posted Feb 26, 2007, 5:28 PM
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My father had the opportunity to get cancer treatment at M. D. Anderson in Houston. The doctors here in Mobile thought it was the top facility in the country. The treatment he received was the best anyone could offer in my mind. However, his throat cancer was too far advanced to save his life. I don't care if Daphne gets it over Mobile, as long as they help fight cancer and save some lives.
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  #74  
Old Posted Feb 26, 2007, 9:10 PM
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I hate that its in Daphne.
I know, I know... but it's still in the metro area.
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  #75  
Old Posted Feb 27, 2007, 4:11 AM
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Don't get me wrong - I just lost my Mom to cancer in June after about 14 years of fighting it. However, as the Church has lost control of Providence over the years (where my Mom received her treatments - I felt like I lived there), it moved from dowtown, to midtown, to WAY out in West Mobile now it is putting core services in Daphne. The very foundation of the Catholic Church is in urban areas and it has lost touch with that. I am more excited about the cancer institiute between Mobile Inf and USA - which will be in midtown as a big plus
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  #76  
Old Posted Feb 27, 2007, 6:52 PM
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^I'm sorry to hear about your mother. That's tough, man.

The mid-town cancer institute will a plus for the city, but this center in Daphne will bring notoriety for the area (if it is indeed an MD Anderson center). The USA/Mobile Infirmary cancer center will be a benefit for the citizens of urban Mobile.

-ALSO-

I'm surprised no one has mentioned this but the Airbus Engineering Center opening ceremony was yesterday. Here's an article:

http://www.al.com/business/press-reg...330.xml&coll=3
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  #77  
Old Posted Feb 28, 2007, 2:32 PM
nimsjus nimsjus is offline
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Port Authority board approves sale of IP property
Port wants new owner, Berg Pipe, to be able to move quickly should Mobile site be chosen for plant
Wednesday, February 28, 2007By KAIJA WILKINSON Business Reporter
The Alabama State Port Authority agreed Tuesday to sell about 86 acres at the former International Paper site in north Mobile to Berg Steel Pipe Corp. of Panama City, Fla., a deal contingent on the company's choice of Mobile for an $80 million steel pipe plant that's projected to create about 130 jobs over three years.

Jimmy Lyons, port authority director, proposed the sale for $34,000 an acre, or $2.9 million, and the authority accepted that recommendation.

Dave Delie, Berg's president and chief executive officer, said the company is entering the home stretch in its site selection process and expects to make an announcement by mid-March. An unspecified site in Louisiana is also under consideration, he said.

But Berg is now negotiating just "a couple of open items" with Mobile and Alabama, Delie said, indicating that Mobile would be the choice should those issues be resolved. He would not say what the items were.

Judy Adams, port authority spokeswoman, said the port is cautiously optimistic that it will land Berg, a company it has been in talks with for about five years.

But, she said, "this is not a done deal. We are not taking this for granted."

The Port Authority in 2004 completed the purchase of a 182-acre tract once used by International Paper. The authority paid $1.6 million for 96 acres; it had reclaimed the rest after IP canceled its long-term lease.

Berg Pipe representatives have visited the site many times to "kick the tires," Adams said. Lyons said the company is doing its own environmental review as well, which is normal, he said.

"We like Mobile," Delie said, "but we need to make sure we go into this with our eyes wide open , and that's what we're in the process of doing -- conducting our due diligence."

Should Berg decide on Mobile, the company plans to break ground sometime in late April, and have the plant operational by summer 2008.

The site has the rail and water access required by the company, and the Mobile Industrial Development Board in December 2006 approved a

$5 million package of tax incentives for the project.

The average salary for the Berg Pipe jobs would be about $53,000.

Whatever Berg's decision, Delie said the company is anxious to get started.

"We are just very excited about moving forward with the project," he said. "The large diameter pipe market is very strong right now, and we want to get this project online as quickly as we can."

Also on Tuesday, the Port Authority learned that more than $10 million in federal Department of Transportation funding will be released for use at the Mobile Container Terminal and Alabama State Docks Intermodal Facility at Choctaw Point.

U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Tuscaloosa, a member of the Senate appropriations committee, announced the release of the money, part of $20 million earmarked for the project in the fiscal 2006 highway mass transit funding bill.

"We are very pleased to see the money released and appropriated so we can continue our progress on the project," Lyons said. "It will help us very much."

The $300 million facility is anticipated to come online in early to mid 2008.
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  #78  
Old Posted Mar 1, 2007, 2:34 PM
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Anyone know if/when Mobile is going to be put on the Microsoft live maps service? They keep putting the pictures from other metros on the forum.
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  #79  
Old Posted Mar 1, 2007, 9:13 PM
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Southsky, I did not even notice that it was Anderson; thanks for pointing that out. Initially i thought it was just some type of clinic of about a coupe thousand sq feet, but this leaves the possibilities much wider. The most likely possibility, if true, is that it will be apart of a hub (houston) and spoke network of clinical trials, treatment, etc. Nothing like what is in Houston, but a valuable asset to the metro.
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  #80  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2007, 10:57 PM
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Does anyone know what's up with the progress of the" Maritime Museum"??????Haven't heard anything on it in a long time????????
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