City on trackPublished 8:49am Wednesday, December 28, 2011
Construction — and recruiting — have continued at Atmore’s Rivercane development this year, and 2012 will welcome a new hotel along with possibilities for new businesses, Mayor Howard Shell said.
“We’re expecting Hampton Inn to come online in January,” Shell said, which would add another hotel to the development that already has a new Holiday Inn Express, a strong sign in an economy that is still recovering.
And the city is still actively recruiting for new businesses.
“We’re going to continue to work hard to attract other businesses,” Shell said.
While many visitors are attracted by the Wind Creek Casino and Hotel operated by the Poarch Creek Indians, Shell said the Holiday Inn’s location on Interstate 65 is also a strong factor in its success.
“Holiday Inn gets a lot of referrals,” he said. “The traffic we get out there is interstate traffic, so we’re generating new dollars. And we’re looking forward to generating some new business.”
Also opening in the past year was a new McDonald’s franchise at the Rivercane site.
“Holiday Inn, Hardee’s and McDonald’s have been very good for the city in generating revenue,” Shell said.
The City of Atmore raised its sales taxes by 1 cent beginning April 1, a move city officials said was necessary to help pay for city services and offset the debt service for the Rivercane project.