ATHENS, Ala. (WAFF) – Driving through Athens almost every street you turn has new development.
“Our latest reports show that we have just over 5,000 approved units that are in the pipeline,” Athens Mayor Ronnie Marks said.
So much that Mayor Marks says it can be hard to keep track… Last month, the city annexed about 300 acres to the city. Marks tells WAFF he hopes to annex another 100 acres.
Limestone County Archives Archivist Rebekah Davis grew up in Athens.
“When I was a teenager in Athens, it felt like the only thing to do in Athens was to go to Huntsville.”
But now the secrets of his hometown.
“Especially in the last five years or so, how much this town has sometimes grown beyond what we can even handle. With infrastructure, traffic and accommodation, we are just trying to keep up, but it has also brought a lot of positive things.
Mayor Marks says the city has grown by more than 12,000 people over the past 12 years. With a current population of around 30,000 and counting.
“In the next three to five years, approximately between 35,000 and 40,000 inhabitants.”
Grow in a smart way that takes public notice.
“It’s a nice balance. That’s why you have to communicate with people and tell them that we are moving forward, moving forward with us. Let’s try to keep our quality of life, our parks, our green spaces, and to provide services to our citizens.
Now Davis no longer has to drive to Huntsville.
“There’s so much vibrancy in the arts and entertainment community, and things families can do. You don’t have to go to Huntsville to have a good time anymore.
One of the major developments that Mayor Marks spoke about is the 32-acre Pryor Park.
This development is expected to include an amphitheater, wading pool and mixed-use buildings for residents. Marks says he hopes to break ground in Phase 1 to begin sewer work in October.
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