City inks deal on I-65 land
Clif Knight, Hartselle Enquirer
The city of Hartselle is now the owner of one of the undeveloped corners of Interstate 65 and Highway 36 and a newcomer in the land development business.
Mayor Dwight Tankersley closed a deal with NCB Inc. of Decatur on June 9 for 18.8 acres at a selling price of $1.9 million. The tract is inside the city limits and is zoned for commercial use. It has 954 feet of frontage on I-65 and 737 feet on Highway 36.
In the process of acquiring title to the land, Tankersley handed over a $550,000 check as a down payment and obligated the city to pay off the balance in five years at a 6.5 percent interest rate and monthly payments of $27,669.
"Were you a little nervous when you signed your name to the contract?" the mayor was asked.
"Not at all," he said. "I was excited that we were closing the deal and moving forward in our efforts to spur economic development on I-65."
He said the next step toward that end would be to bore under the interstate and extend sewer service to the property.
"We have already explored a joint agreement between the city and Hartselle Utilities to get sewer extended across the interstate in that area" he said. "We're trying to set up another meeting to work out the details. That could happen at the city council's next work session on June 26.
"The cost of installing a 16-inch casing under the interstate and extending a gravity flow sewer main to serve the property would run as high as $500,000. It's expensive but it vital to attract businesses to locate there."
Tankersley said trees and undergrowth will be cleared from the property at some point in the future to make it more attractive to prospective businesses.
"But that will have to wait for awhile," he added. "We have Public Works' equipment and operators committed to the new soccer field project at the present time."