Town Madison project gets $40 million bond deal to cover infrastructure costs, connect to I-565

Margaritaville and stadium concept art. Courtesy: Breland Companies

MADISON, Ala. — The board that oversees the Town Madison public-private partnership deal approved a $40 million bond to cover infrastructure and related costs for the project Tuesday.

Town Madison, off I-565 in Madison, is set to be the site for a new stadium that will house a minor league baseball team starting in 2020. The city of Madison has agreed to spend up to $46 million to construct the stadium.

The bond issue approved Tuesday by the Town Madison Cooperative District will replace an existing bond worth $22 million. It will be used for infrastructure work on the Town Madison site, but most of the money will be spent on building interchanges from the property to I-565.

The property will also be the site for a Margaritaville hotel. The cooperative district board and the Madison City Council have agreed to provide the hotel’s owners and developers with $9 million in incentives.

Steve Haraway, a Madison County Commission and the cooperative district’s newly elected chairman, described the board’s decision Tuesday.

“By charter of the board we had approved $22 million for the project, and we increased that up to a total of $40 million. So that the next phase of the project can be done,” Haraway said.

He said the project scope expanded, from the time the board was first formed about 4 years ago. the next phase is coming.

The interchange and the ride-in, ride-out,” Haraway said. “Originally it was just for the Town Madison Boulevard, and some of the infrastructure, like water and sewer and that type stuff.

So we extended it now where we can start the interchange process and also move forward on some of the companies that are coming like Margaritaville and some of those others.”

WHNT News 19 reported the terms of the incentive deal last week:

Madison City Council President Tommy Overcash said the city worked with the Town Madison Cooperative District to create a $9 million incentive package to the hotel franchisee, Chance Madison, LLC.

Overcash said that Madison will fund $6 million of that over six years, with the first half of that payment due up front when the hotel opens. Then, the city will pay the rest over the remaining years.

Meanwhile, the Town Madison Cooperative District has its part to play. Generally, Overcash said the District is responsible for collecting the property, liquor, and sales taxes to pay back the landowner, Breland Companies, for infrastructure costs. But to fund its $3 million in incentives, the District will let Margaritaville keep 75 percent of the taxes generated at the hotel property up to that $3 million sum.

On Tuesday, Haraway said the board’s actions Tuesday mean plenty of work will soon be underway at the Town Madison site.

“The stadium can actually start taking place, Margaritaville can now have the OK to move forward, the approvals have been put in place for them, so we’ll start seeing some development there,” Haraway said. “And start seeing some dirt being moved and then also, the interchange, that’s one big part of the project that we’ve got to get to next. And that’s about four months out before we start seeing that.”

The board also approved an additional tax schedule for purchases in Town Madison to help repay the debt incurred by the $40 million infrastructure bond. That includes a 2 percent fee for lodging, 1 percent for food and beverages and 1 percent for entertainment.