Master plan revealed

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Valley Grande unveils 90-acre development proposal

By Deborah goodwin

The Selma Times-Journal

Email newsletter signup

VALLEY GRANDE &045; There was a packed house at Monday night’s council meeting. The meeting was held at the Valley Grande Community Center to accommodate the crowd.

Following the regular council meeting, the proposed Community Master Plan for the town’s 90-acre project was revealed by William Johnson

Jr. and Neil Couvillion of Reece Hoopes & Fincher, land planners and landscape architects.

The proposed plan includes a commercial district, office district, two parks, a gated historic residential area, a traditional residential area, a town green in the center of the development, community building, land reserved for future expansion and a lake, which borders the existing walking trail.

The proposed plan is similar to those of the Mountainbrook and Mt. Laurel areas.

An informal reception followed the meeting. Attendants had the opportunity to ask questions and give their input.

Among those attending were Valley Grande residents, local businessmen, representatives from the Selma/Dallas County Chamber of Commerce, Economic Development Agency, District Attorney’s office, Living Waters Worship Center, Dallas County Sheriff’s Department, Martin Middle School, The Selma Times-Journal, Clifford Hunter of the Dallas County Commission, Alabama State Representative Yusuf Salaam and Darrio Melton of Congressman Artur Davis’ office.

During the Q&A portion of the meeting, one resident asked if the proposed residential area would be for lease or sale.

Several residents of Dallas County travel to neighboring towns to shop, dine and go to the movies and in doing so, leave tax dollars in those towns.

Lifelong resident Kenny Harris was excited about the future development of the town.

Barry Mask, land developing consultant, formerly of Thompson Engineering, made an initial presentation introducing the company to Valley Grande in July 2006. Thompson Engineering has since closed its Montgomery office, but Mask will work with Reece Hoopes & Fincher to complete the project.

Lee said a town-wide meeting will be held &8220;later on.&8221;

The council is enthusiastic about the widening of Highway 22, which runs adjacent to the 90-acre development. The highway will go from two lanes to five. With the widening will come an incentive for businessmen looking to invest in the area.

It costs $78,000 to $80,000 to have a turning lane in front of a business.

The council has emphasized community input from the beginning of the process and is steadily doing so.