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Downtown area growing

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POSTED: September 8, 2007 5:04 a.m.
Despite the slow progress of revitalizing Hinesville’s downtown district, a local developer has heeded the community’s call, and is currently erecting a building on MLK.
Rodney Elliot, owner of A-Plus Alarm Technology on North Main Street, is constructing a $750,000, 17,500 sq. ft. building to house office and retail space, and will move his business to the MLK location.
Elliot plans to begin construction on the building in September, and anticipates the site will be completed by January 2008.
“As a local developer, I am trying to turn the downtown district into a hub where people from Hinesville and the greater community can eat, shop and conduct various kinds of business,” Elliot said. “At this point, we have plenty of office space downtown. Now we need the retail and commercial developments, and I hope other developers in the area will help in this process redevelopment.”
In addition to developers, Hinesville city officials are working to resuscitate the downtown area as well by pursuing the Memorial Drive extension project.
When the city council soon finishes acquiring the appropriate land, they will start construction to realign Memorial Drive and Washington Avenue to eliminate the disconnect between those roads and Highway 84, City Manager Billy Edwards said.
“The problem is there's no connectivity to the Memorial commercial corridor from 84, and that cut-off has collapsed the business in the area,” Edwards said. “During the realignment, we will also create a traffic circle at Main Street, Memorial and Washington, which will create an opportunity for new businiss.”
Elliot has also expressed an interest in constructing a four-story building at the circle.
“The building would have retail on the bottom floor, office space on the second floor, new apartments on the third and fourth and a parking garage,” he said. “We have to wait for the Memorial construction to begin to see how it will work out, but this $9 million project is something we hope to get off the ground.”
 

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