Since 2008 the City of Alcoa has been pushing and spending to develop a city center.

The city wants to use a 252 acre site that used to be the Alcoa Aluminum Company West Plant. However, it definitely would take some time to develop since the site is "Classified as a brownfield, the site has a limited number of known environmental constraints affecting development placement."

Fourteen years later and who knows how many millions of dollars the entire project is still in the development phase.

As a positive for the city, a Texas Roadhouse is being built on the site to replace a smaller Texas Roadhouse across the street. In addition, a Food City is being built to replace an existing Food City two miles down the road. And, then there is a new apartment complex in development to add to the tax coffers?

TDOT spent millions of dollars to build "better" access to the site, which is located just south of the Alcoa Highway/Hunt Road intersection.

"City Manager Mark Johnson said land preparation will be complete once Alcoa is returned a check for $2 million and approximately 30 acres within Springbrook."

In addition, as has been said over the 14 years, tax generation, tax generation, tax generation.

"Outlined in the original agreement [from 2016], Alcoa estimated investing $8 million that ACDP (Airport Center Development Partners, LLC) would pay back over time as it sold property to developers. However, ACDP has yet to pay the city back for the $6.5 million the city spent." ... "Alcoa paved Tesla Boulevard, installed street lights, provided utility access and fronted other development costs for which ACDP would reimburse the city."

So is that $8.5 million that the City of Alcoa has spent of taxpayer monies over the past 14 years that has not realized any return? I would almost bet that the city has spent more than that.

"ACDP signed over their monetary responsibility to another company — TN Alcoa Primary, LLC.Along with the debt owed to the city, TN Alcoa Primary acquired ACDP’s remaining land assets within Springbrook Farm."

Then there is a lawsuit filed by "Plaintiff NAI Knoxville, Inc" in December, 2021, "against ACDP and other interwoven LLCs for the anticipated agreement change that materialized April 22 in Alcoa’s commission chambers." The lawsuit apparently alleges that the defendants are trying to get out of paying approximately $900,000 in "sale commissions on Springbrook Farm land."

It appears the city claims that "Three apartment complexes, a townhome community and the Mills Street houses will add 1,072 tax-assessed properties to the city." Not all of these residences will be in Springbrook Farm. However, the city has yet to explain how the increase in citizens will be managed for the school system. The Alcoa Schools are already near capacity. Is any increase in taxes going to be offset by an increase in the cost for a bigger schools system?

"The City of Alcoa originated in 1918 as the first planned community in the State of Tennessee. A planned community is any community that was carefully planned from its inception. In the original plans, Alcoa, Inc., included one acre of park space for every 100 city inhabitants."

..."a 2-acre park to be named Centennial Park is planned for the middle of Springbrook Farms. "Johnson said each greenspace project will be completed as the city has room in the budget or receives grants."

That's 2 acres of park space for 1,092 residential units, not even city inhabitants. Whereas, to keep the City of Alcoa as desirable as it is now, there should be at a minimum 11 additional acres of park space.

We can only hope that some day this project will be a success and the City of Alcoa will continue to be an asset.

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