Former Albertville Kmart property to get new life

ALBERTVILLE, Ala. -- When Kmart stores shuttered their doors across the country earlier this year, one of them left a gaping empty lot at one of Marshall County's biggest intersections, but Albertville city leaders announced it's going to get a new life.

"It's been about a nine-month process but we closed, officially closed yesterday," Mayor Tracy Honea said, talking about the former Kmart site property. A developer will start immediately to work toward redevelopment.

"We don't know if they're going to tear the building down or try to redevelop. Our assumption at this point is the likelihood is that they'll tear it down and rebuild," Honea explained.

They don't know just yet what will go in there, but the city will have a say. The goal is to keep sales tax in Albertville and potentially draw in shoppers from other areas. The Shoppes of Albertville center, built in 2016, has that effect.

The site location is prime: city leaders have fielded calls on the property for years. "That location is kind of main and main for Marshall County," Honea said, "This is one of the highest traffic counts in North Alabama."

Because things with the sale are so early, the city's economic development director Mike Price says they don't have a time frame on when work will start, but they want it to start as soon as possible. He said once things get going they expect the process to move fairly quickly.