May 4, 2017

May 4, 2017 Minutes
Submitted by Tommy Fulton, Contributing Editor
Call to Order: The meeting was called to order by President Les Greer.
Sam Siegel gave the invocation, followed by Larry Sindel, who led us in song and the Pledge.
Introduction of Guests & Visitors: Tom Martenstein introduced our guests along with visiting Rotarians.
Announcements: May 18th will be “Graduation Day”, in honor of high school and college graduates.
Ken Robinson spoke about the Paul Harris Foundation.
Program: Ernest Ladd introduced Elizabeth Stevens as our speaker. Elizabeth is the President and CEO of the Downtown Mobile Alliance, as well as a member of the Rotary Club of Mobile.
Elizabeth stated that residential development is on the rise in Downtown Mobile, with approximately 600 units either under construction or in the planning stage. Several of the properties have recently been completed and are currently in the rental/purchase market.
She listed several projects including the Meridian @ the Port, which will feature about 260 rental units. The Staples Pake building will begin renting units in July. Other projects include the following:
Fort Conde Apartments (still in conceptual stage)…130-150 units.
Gayfers Building…80 units + 3,000 sf Commercial space.
Temple Lodge…12 units + 4,000 sf Commercial space.
Russell School Lofts…28 units (technically located in Oakleigh).
Marine Street Lofts and Old Shell Road Lofts.
360 Dauphin Street…8 Residential units, plus Southern National Restaurant.
Warren Street Cottages, near Congress and Cedar.
603 St. Michael St. is an AirBnB.
Hilton Garden Inn…93 rooms and a restaurant/bar.
Elizabeth went on to mention that there are approximately 51 eateries in the downtown area, with more to come. We have the new Moon Pie General Store open now, as well as two new breweries which should open soon. Automobile Alley is seeing a lot of new interest and development including Precision Engineering and Innovation PortAL in the Threaded Fastener building.
Other properties of interest include the new Federal Courthouse, the Old Mobile Antiques project (25,000 sf) and the Fowler Lighting project. Also, several properties are using special incentives to upgrade their parking facilities.
Elizabeth mentioned the Isom Clemon Park Initiative, which is supported by our Rotary Club. She also lauded the efforts by the Business Improvement District (BID), which supports downtown on a 7-day a week basis.
Les Greer thanked Elizabeth for her presentation and presented a certificate to her, noting that a donation in her honor had been made to the Rotary International Foundation.
The meeting was adjourned at 1:00 pm.