Downtown: Cut the red tape! - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Downtown: Cut the red tape!

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  • Worth Co. hosts open house

    Worth Co. hosts open house

    Monday, July 28 2014 11:24 PM EDT2014-07-29 03:24:37 GMT
    It's already back to school time for some south Georgia students. Classes start tomorrow in Worth County.On Monday afternoon, all the schools held open houses for parents and students.At Worth County elementary, families got to met the teachers and get acquainted with the school.The Principal says the staff is ready, and parents told us they appreciated the open house."We are just going to keep going strong with things that we have done in the past, we had a very successful school year last y...More >>
    It's already back to school time for some south Georgia students. Classes start tomorrow in Worth County.On Monday afternoon, all the schools held open houses for parents and students.At Worth County elementary, families got to met the teachers and get acquainted with the school.The Principal says the staff is ready, and parents told us they appreciated the open house."We are just going to keep going strong with things that we have done in the past, we had a very successful school year last y...More >>
  • Lee Co. Woman speaks out about scary home invasion

    Lee Co. Woman speaks out about scary home invasion

    Monday, July 28 2014 11:20 PM EDT2014-07-29 03:20:11 GMT
    A Lee County woman says she'll think twice before opening her front door after a frightening home invasion.Tonya Stewart says Friday night a group of young people rushed inside her home and beat her up.Her husband ran to help. In the meantime, her 2-year-old niece suffered a busted lip.Stewart ended up with bruises and a black eye.“I just felt like my house was in danger and my life was in danger. I felt like I was gonna be killed or someone in my house was gonna be killed. I had a little gir...More >>
    A Lee County woman says she'll think twice before opening her front door after a frightening home invasion.Tonya Stewart says Friday night a group of young people rushed inside her home and beat her up.Her husband ran to help. In the meantime, her 2-year-old niece suffered a busted lip.Stewart ended up with bruises and a black eye.“I just felt like my house was in danger and my life was in danger. I felt like I was gonna be killed or someone in my house was gonna be killed. I had a little gir...More >>
  • Football coaches stress hydration as South Georgia heats up

    Football coaches stress hydration as South Georgia heats up

    Monday, July 28 2014 11:12 PM EDT2014-07-29 03:12:23 GMT
    Football is an intense, and grueling collision sport, and when South Georgia heats up, practice is even more stressful on the body."We don't wanna lose a kid because of the fact they are not hydrating themselves," says Monroe Head Coach Charles Truitt.That's why coaches stress the importance of staying hydrated on and off the field."We preach when they get home at night after football practice, to hydrate themselves and then we they get up in the morning hydrate themselves," says Truitt.After...More >>
    Football is an intense, and grueling collision sport, and when South Georgia heats up, practice is even more stressful on the body."We don't wanna lose a kid because of the fact they are not hydrating themselves," says Monroe Head Coach Charles Truitt.That's why coaches stress the importance of staying hydrated on and off the field."We preach when they get home at night after football practice, to hydrate themselves and then we they get up in the morning hydrate themselves," says Truitt.After...More >>
ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

Downtown Albany leaders hope getting rid of one level of bureaucracy will speed up redevelopment downtown. 

This week, the city commission voted to dissolve a tax advisory committee that looked over development plans.

Much of the area has been getting a facelift and some say it will attract new business.  

New sidewalks, store fronts, and even a kayak / canoe launch point are some of the developments bringing new life to downtown Albany.   

"We've been doing facade grants for about two years and that's gonna sunset.  We're on a final application phase right now," said Aaron Blair, Downtown Manger.  

A $3.3 Million bond from the Tax Allocation District formed in 2009 has been paying for the improvements. An advisory committee looked over all projects, but city leaders dissolved that committee this week.  

"We still have to go through the same process for approving projects; we still have the same reporting regulations.  We still have an annual audit.  There shouldn't be any concern," said Blair.    

School board members and city and county leaders made up the committee, many already involved in Albany Dougherty Inner City Authority project approval.    "It removes the part of well we've got to take it to this board, then this board, then this board, then so on," said Blair.    

Blair says revitalization projects will now speed up.  "Yeah, this is one of those tipping points over the next two years where you see downtown start to change."     

One of the key challenges, Blair said for downtown development has to do with residential units, and he's hoping to build more in the area.  "I take phone calls all the time of people looking for a loft to live in downtown."   

He says building just 20 lofts by the end of the year will do a lot to bring more foot traffic to downtown's streets.  

Blair says one of the biggest projects in the works for the area is a proposed Waffle House just around the corner on Broad Street. He says developers hope to open the restaurant before summer.

 

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