The Alabama Grocers Association recently held their annual Food Industry Finest Luncheon honoring their retailer, wholesaler, manufacturer and broker of the year award winners.
Over 200 people attended the event to discuss the work of the Alabama Grocers Association in 2013 and those in the food, beverage and grocery profession here in Alabama.
“We are proud to have honored each of these fine individuals today. They are an asset to the Alabama Grocers Association and to the grocery industry in the state of Alabama,” Ellie Taylor, president of the Alabama Grocers Association, said. “We are lucky to have such a thriving industry in our great state and individuals like Danny Manning make this possible.”
Danny Manning, President and CEO of Manning’s Food for Less, was selected as 2013 Retailer of the Year in Alabama.
Food For Less is a chain of nine independent grocery stores in the Mobile area. Their business model is based on a “cost plus” concept with the goal of offering exceptionally low prices at high quality standards.
“This award is really for our entire staff, they are all the best at their jobs. Also I couldn’t have done any of this without the support of my wife Debbie, my daughters Daphne, Dwan and Chaunette and Allie,” Manning said. “Community involvement is very important to us. We are involved with our local schools, the Senior Bowl, St Jude’s by the Bay and so many other wonderful charities.”
The Manning family employs over 300 people in the state and has been in business for over four decades.
BPG unveils major upgrades to Westward Plaza and Pinebrook
The genesis of Burton Property Group (BPG) dates back to 1900. Smith’s Bakery, founded by Gordon Smith, began as a four-baker operation and quickly grew to a prominent regional bakery with four plants and 600 employees. The bakery was a staple in Mobile and distributed baked goods all along the Gulf States.
In 1983, after the dissolution of Smith’s Bakery, one of Gordon Smith’s children, Margaret C. Smith, took her portion of company stock and directed her great nephew, Roe Burton, to build a property investment and management company, MCS Investments.
Several more business moves eventually wound up with the founding of Burton Property Group (BPG) in early 2012.
As a local company, BPG was confident in Mobile’s future and decided to invest its capital back into the community. Since June 2012, BPG has invested over $70 million in Mobile and Baldwin County and another $50 million in development in 2014 and 2015. BPG’s goal is to raise the bar of retail in Mobile and its two most recently notable projects include the redevelopment of Pinebrook Shopping Center and Westwood Plaza.
The facelift at Pinebrook has already begun. The first major benchmark was the completion of the relocation of Books-A-Million. Still to come is the relocation of Stein Mart to the former Books-A-Million suite, facade renovations, improvements to the landscaping, parking lot and sidewalk, an added traffic light at the west end of the center on Airport Boulevard, and Pinebrook has given the city of Mobile 12 feet of their property so the city can add a right-turn-only lane on McGregor Avenue onto Airport. And of course, their most popular soon-to-be tenant, Whole Foods Market.
BPG is also bringing several other new market tenants to the center, which will be announced later. Cost of the redevelopment exceeds $9 million. The project is slated to be complete in 2015.
Currently, the redevelopment of Westwood Plaza is BPG’s largest project under development. The shopping center today is 140,000-square-feet. Once the redevelopment is complete, it will be 240,000-square-feet. Burton Property Group purchased additional land that will allow expansion of the center along Airport Boulevard.
The expanded property allows additional traffic light installations off of Airport via Alverson Road. BPG purchased the center in 2012 noticing there was a severe lack of junior anchor tenancy in West Mobile. The redevelopment will create 22 new stores: one new major anchor tenant, five new junior anchor stores and 16 small tenant stores.
When BPG’s brokers, Josh Burmeister and Buff Teague with SRS Real Estate, took the center to market, the response from national retailers was pleasantly surprising. BPG and its brokers have been talking with many new market retailers to open stores in Westwood. Major occupant announcements are in the works and scheduled to be made later, I’m told.
The redevelopment will also include the addition of 130,000-square-feet of improvements to the existing facades, landscaping, parking lot, and sidewalks.
Cost of the entire project exceeds $18 million and is slated to be complete by 2015.
Commercial Real Estate Moves
Bradford Ladd with Roberts Brothers Commercial & Property Management Inc. recently completed the purchase of 221/221A Dauphin St. for Dr. Gene J. A. Terrezza. Jeremy Milling of Milling Commercial Realty was the listing agent.
Dr. Terrezza will be opening an optometry office at the 221A Dauphin St. address and lease the adjacent 3,675-square-foot 221 Dauphin St. side. The building is 7,350-square-feet in total.
“I feel that having a doctor purchase a building a block off of Bienville Square is a most positive indicator that downtown is becoming a much more viable location to conduct business,” Ladd said.
205 Saint Emanuel St. was leased to Davis, Barnette, South & Patrick Advertising. This 2,800-square-foot office is located within Fort Conde Village. Fort Conde Restoration Venture LLC is the property owner. Bradford Ladd handled the transaction.
Burton Property Group (BPG) recently announced that Ooh LaLa and Massage Envy has opened new locations at Jubilee Square Shopping Center in Daphne.
Occupying a 1,620-square-foot space, Ooh LaLa currently has three additional locations at the Wharf, Fairhope and Orange Beach.
Massage Envy will inhabit a 4,025-square-foot space and is slated to open its doors sometime during the first quarter of 2014.
CPA firm Crow, Shields and Bailey recently purchased a 2,571-square-foot office building from local investors for $330,000. The property is located at 7133 Stone Dr. off Hwy. 98 in Daphne. With the addition of the new space, the CPA firm will now have three offices located in Mobile, Gulf Shores and Daphne.
Mary Cane and Joe Courtney with Courtney & Morris represented the buyers and Tracy Womack and Sharon Wright with White-Spunner Realty represented the sellers.
The Sawmill recently leased a 1,160-square-foot retail space at 77 South Section St. in Fairhope. The shop features custom-made home furnishings and décor crafted from reclaimed wood, mainly from the Fairhope area. Sharon Wright with White-Spunner Realty handled the transaction.
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