ALBERTVILLE, Ala. -- Albertville city leaders say they're getting a lot of interest in the Kmart site, which is set to shut its doors this month. They say, ideally they want to fill the void while bringing in something unique to the area.
Like many of its counterparts before it, the Kmart store in Albertville has a deadline to shut its doors for good. It's the last store in Alabama, and it's closing this month after 35 years. “Within the first two or three days of the announcement, we probably filled at least 20,” Albertville Economic Development Director Mike Price said.
Price is talking about inquiries on the site and what's next. City leaders weren't surprised at the huge amount of interest in the site, but they say the company was. “We’ve had everything from your major big-box retailer developers to local developers,” Price explained.
Presenting a wide range of options for what might go in there. As to what options exactly, city leaders can't say just yet. “The proximity in the county, the traffic counts there, it’s been a highly sought out piece of property for a while now,” Price said.
City leaders want a company to fill the void while standing unique to the county. Neighboring Shoppes of Albertville boasts retailers that filled the latter goal when those stores opened their doors nearly two years ago to the date.
The stores are unique to the area, bringing in shoppers from across the county and the surrounding counties. Price says that success is exemplary to developers looking at the Kmart site.
“The city’s trying to coordinate as best as we can with those folks and try to steer what we feel would be the best fit for the market would be. At the end of the day we may or may not be able to control all of what happens, but we want to be at least in the conversation.”
The company believes it could have a decision by the time the store closes at the end of the month. Depending on the development the site might have to sit vacant for several months during the transition.