By Jennie Robinson
City Council, District 3
Huntsville is not only the biggest city in the state but it is also the Number One Best Place to Live. US News and World Report said, “The city came out on top among the nation’s 150 most populous metropolitan areas, using a scoring system that weighed communities on whether they were a ‘good value,’ their desirability as places to live, their job markets and their quality of life.”
Mayor Battle commented “Rankings like these affirm our commitment to continuing to provide a healthy, thriving economy without losing our identity… Great things are happening in Huntsville!” And we see many of those great things happening in South Huntsville.
A record number of new homes are being built in South Huntsville and they are selling at record prices with short time on market. Building permits increased by 114% from 2020. The average sales price for a single-family home in 2021 increased by 11.9% to $319,260.
South Huntsville is known for its many recreational offerings. The Aldridge Creek greenway system now extends from Jones Valley all the way to Ditto Landing. A new greenway at Ditto Landing runs west along the river under the Whitesburg Bridge. It will eventually connect with Elgie’s Walk, the first phase of the Singing River Trail at Hays Farm. The newly rebuilt Weatherly Multiuse Path will connect the Hays trails to the Aldridge Creek Greenway and back to Ditto to create a nearly ten mile loop.
The 32,000 square foot South Huntsville Public Library opened its doors at the Sandra Moon Complex last September to rave reviews. It is almost as popular as the twelve nearby pickle ball courts. Construction on a playground next to the library will soon begin. Renovations have started at the Sandra Moon Community and Performing Arts Center. Office and rehearsal space for community performing arts organizations will finish next summer followed by renovations to the auditorium.
New retail and restaurant sites are also increasing the quality of life for South Huntsville residents. Since June 2018, more than $106 million in commercial projects have been permitted along the South Parkway. There was a 55.6% increase in commercial permits over 2020.
Publix anchors the new Market at Hays Farm and will soon be joined by Amerigo and Tom Brown’s, two restaurants new to Huntsville, as well as Rock N Roll Sushi and Wingstop. Slim Chickens is moving into the old Ruby Tuesdays location on the South Parkway and Pappo’s Pizza is moving into Rosies Plaza. Grimaldi’s Pizza and Naked Taco have opened in the Bailey Cove are with Peach Cobbler Factory coming soon.
Many of these restaurants are new to the state and could have opened in Madison, Mid City, or Downtown. But the company leaders chose to open their first locations in South Huntsville. That tells us more about the future of South Huntsville than just about anything else.
It really is the best place to live in the City that has been named The Best Place to Live.