OWA to open soon

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Being built from the ground up, the Park at OWA will soon be open to visitors this summer, officials said recently.

OWA Director of Marketing and Public Relations Kristin Hellmich was the guest speaker at the Rotary Club of Atmore’s meeting.

She gave members and visitors an update as to the park’s construction progress, what the park will offer to visitors and general information on the project.

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In October 2016, the Poarch Creek Indians, who have placed a $240 million investment in OWA, unveiled the project. Construction began during the same month.

“The speed of construction is something I haven’t seen before,” Hellmich said.

Hellmich said in 2014, the city of Foley and a private developer contracted the Tribe about the project. Two years later, the Tribe became the owner and developer.

Hellmich said this project is a good way for the Tribe to be known for something other than gaming.

She showed renderings of the park, the progress of construction with many buildings already erected.

Hellmich said by mid July, phase 1 of the project is slated to be open.

Phase 1 includes a hotel, stadium, events center and amusement parks with each opening in increments.

The master plan is to added four additional hotels, along with retail districts, she said.

One of the facets about OWA that visitors will notice is the southern town feel, Hellmich said.

She said the southern downtown was built from many influences of several southern Alabama towns.

For construction, the project is using six general contractors and 1,000-plus construction workers.

At the amusement park, construction on the roller coasters is progressing. The park will carry thrill, family and kiddie rides.

Additionally, a park called The Island, a 1.5-acre lot, will house an amphitheater for events.

This is the first park in the country that’s being built from the ground up since 2012.