Maybe it is us but we don’t see anything preventing development along the bustling Martha Berry Highway these days near Mount Berry Mall. If anything, the area is red hot thanks to private funding and financing. The following projects alone outline in excess of $5 million. Consider:
RaceTrac: The convenience store will be about 5,500 square feet and feature Swirl World frozen treats, an expanded coffee bar with six brews of coffee and free WiFi. It will employ 20 to 25 people. That’s in addition to fuel pumps and traditional services. Based at the corner of the Amruchee Connector and Martha Berry, look for an opening in early 2018.
Goo-Goo Express Wash: The Dulaney family moved quickly after the purchase of the former After Hours Auto Center and Quick Lube at 2973 Martha Berry. Demolition soon followed and construction is well under way on the latest express wash. Goo-Goo has locations on North Broad (including full-service cleanings) and Shorter Avenue. Look for an early 2018 opening.
DiPrima’s Shoes: DiPrima’s Shoes at 2904 Martha Berry Highway has taken down the former steakhouse side of the campus to make way for an expanded shoe store. The family has stores in Armuchee, Cartersville and Calhoun.
La Conquista Mexican Grill relocation: The owners wasted little time between the closing of WOW wingery and cafe and relocating from further north on Martha Berry. The grill opened in early October at 2817 Martha Berry Highway.
In recent years, you’ve also seen the redevelopment of the former Circuit City building into a Dollar Tree and Party City; the arrival of Taco Bell and then Jack’s on the other side of the highway in addition to a massive makeover for McDonald’s; and completion of the Rome Tennis Center at Berry College, opened in the summer of 2016 (not included in our $15 million estimate as it was special tax money that built it).
But maybe we’re missing something as Hull Property Group, which bought then-Mount Berry Square more than five years ago for $6 million, has won approval from a city committee to seek a tax allocation district for potential growth there (see the Rome News). Hull did the same thing recently with its retail center in LaGrange (background).
In an August interview with Hometown Headlines, Hull’s Coles H. Doyle said, “The implementation of a TAD district around the mall would allow us to make an immediate and substantial investment in this redevelopment. We are very pleased with the positive response we have received from local leadership to the proposed redevelopment plans. It’s the right thing for the mall and for Rome.”
The TAD proposal must still clear a few more reviews.