CommunityCulture

Urban Renewal Comes to Downtown Birmingham

By September 5, 2013 No Comments

As many reading this blog probably know, Daxko is headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama. While not originally from here, I have grown fiercely loyal to my adopted city. So, it is with continual hope that I view the recent great strides this city has made to bring new industry, tourism and beauty to the downtown area. In fact, a recent New York Times article highlighted the urban renewal happening in our dear city. From Railroad Park that borders the rail lines dissecting the north and the south sides of the city to our brand new minor-league baseball stadium to the new funky shops and restaurants along 2nd Avenue south, Birmingham is “reviving the downtown district.”

This success has been a long time coming. In the 1920s, Birmingham was a booming steel town, boasting the “heaviest corner on earth” with the four tallest building in the South at 20th Street and First Avenue North. With the declining need for steel after World War II, the selection of Atlanta as an airport hub, and the civil rights firestorm that enveloped the South, Birmingham lost its way.

But, this story is one of hope. In the 1970s Birmingham found new ways to diversify. It has since become one of the major medical and research centers of the South and found new ways to prosper in the realm of banking.

It took much longer for visitors and residents to come back to downtown for leisure activities. Only recently has Birmingham been able to entice people downtown after business hours. But now, on any given Saturday you can find Birminghamians downtown walking off a big meal at Railroad Park, taking in a game at Region’s Field, or indulging in food, drink, music or all three at Birmingham’s 2nd Avenue district or at the new Westin hotel located close to the convention center and the soon-to-be “Entertainment District.” In addition, the craft beer industry and the food truck trend have both found there way here and are prospering as well.

We at Daxko couldn’t be more proud to be in Birmingham. Many in the Daxko Nation grew up here. I have experienced all these changes as a transplant and I am happy to report my adopted home is thriving.

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