Spanish Fort buys delta park site for $8.5 million

By Guy Busby
Government Editor
guy@gulfcoastmedia.com
Posted 9/14/22

SPANISH FORT — A 144-acre waterfront site on the Mobile-Tensaw Delta is now public property following a purchase by the city of Spanish Fort, Mayor Mike McMillan said.At the Spanish Fort City …

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Spanish Fort buys delta park site for $8.5 million

Posted

SPANISH FORT — A 144-acre waterfront site on the Mobile-Tensaw Delta is now public property following a purchase by the city of Spanish Fort, Mayor Mike McMillan said.

At the Spanish Fort City Council meeting Tuesday, Sept. 6, McMillan said the city has acquired the property along Bay Minette Creek on Alabama 225. The city received an $8.5-million grant to make the purchase through the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act.

“Since the last meeting, the city was able to close on a piece of property that will serve the citizens of Spanish Fort long-term for a number of years,” McMillan said. “It's because of GOMESA funding through the state. We received $8.5 million for the acquisition of the property known as Cypress Point, which is 144 acres on Highway 225 at Bay Minette Creek waterfront property, pristine property, unimproved property. We have an opportunity to do something with it.”

The mayor said city officials will meet with residents in a series of public meetings to discuss how to develop the site as a nature park.

“The plans initially are for it to be a family-friendly park that will have picnicking, walking trails, kayaks, fishing piers, those kinds of things, so the public will have access to the water in our city so that's a beautiful thing that this city is moving forward to preserving that,” McMillan said.

The site had previously been approved for multi-family zoning but plans for development were canceled after the economic downturn around 2008, according to city reports. The mayor said city officials are now working to complete studies needed before work can begin on the site.

“Certainly, we'll have to do some historical studies and everything that goes with that, but what a beautiful piece of property and I commend the council for moving forward with that,” McMillan said. “It's an achievement this council can be very proud of that will be there for a number of years.”

The council is also moving ahead on plans for another waterfront site purchased with GOMESA money.

The council voted Sept. 6 to approve a contract with the engineering company Goodwyn Mills and Cawood to develop plans for a shoreline restoration project on the Causeway at the former site of a Hudson Oil station. The total cost of the engineering fees for design, drawings, construction bidding and other work is $262,570, according to the resolution.

The city bought the property with money from a GOMESA grant. That grant was for $2.5 million. The plan for the property includes building a waterfront park on the site.

GOMESA is a federal revenue sharing program that allows money from offshore oil and gas leases in Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas to be used for coastal conservation, restoration and hurricane protection projects.

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