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Ledo means big dough

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November 13, 2006

Albany -- One of the reasons Lee County may be growing so fast, is that space is running out for development in Dougherty County. Ledo Road is quickly becoming the place to be for new business in the Lee-Dougherty Area.

There are some new developments that you may soon be visiting.

"This is going to be the reception area here." For two decades, Mack Morrell has spent big money renting space to house his hair salon. "About $175,000, renting for 20 years," he says.

Lots of money that went down the drain, but now, he says he's struck gold.  He was one of the first people to invest in Ledo plaza, a 10 unit retail space that will be completed in just a few weeks. "Allows me to be my own landlord, instead of renting for 20 years," Morrell says.

Keith Brookard, a developer from the Albany area, jumped at the chance to buy land along Ledo. He calls it the "Hottest thing Albany's got going right now."

Already, seven of the 10 units here have been sold, and a second phase will soon be under construction. Brookard says small and large business owners alike recognize that Ledo is the place to be. "I think within three to five years you'll see Ledo Road just like Westover Road is for other property. There aren't many other areas of town to go to."

That's because Brookard isn't the only developer in the area. Victory real estate investments of Columbus is planning a huge retail space in front of Grand Island Golf Course, including a 100,000 square foot department store, and space for several fast food restaurants out front. "This is an area we think will continue to grow until it fills up."

With retail and food space-- Mellow Mushroom is currently accepting bids to build in front of Wynnsong Cinemas, a hotel could go in next door, and across the street plans are underway for a bank, more restaurants and retail space.

All good news for Morrell. "Extra room to grow!" he says.

With new traffic, he'll be seeing new clientele, as will other businesses choosing to invest in this area. In addition to Mack Hair Salon at Ledo Plaza, you'll also soon see a new coffee shop, and an area physician has purchased two of the other units. The units start around $150,000.


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