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    City of Montgomery
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Study: Montgomery 23rd best business startup site

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Study: Montgomery 23rd best business startup site

Written by Brad Harper

Mar. 13, 2014 |


Going into business in Montgomery is a capital idea, according to a new national study.

Financial site ranked the nation’s 150 biggest cities according to how fertile they are for entrepreneurs, based on a wide range of factors. After all the data was added up, Alabama’s capital city landed at No. 23 among the best places to start a new business.

The rankings took into account factors ranging from the cost of office space to the five-year survival rate for local startups.

Montgomery Mayor Todd Strange said entrepreneurs are willing to risk a lot to pursue their business dreams, citing a nationwide 10-year business failure rate of 90 percent. That’s why programs such as the Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce’s business incubator are so important, he said.

“We obviously don’t have enough entrepreneurs, and we still need access to capital,” he said. “But the incubator is a perfect example of what you can do, with some of the great successes they’ve had.”

Southern cities dominated the WalletHub list, and Alabama had a strong showing overall. Montgomery ranked one spot behind Mobile and two ahead of Huntsville.

Jacksonville, Fla., landed at No. 1.

Other factors in the rankings included access to financing, corporate taxes, cost of living, real estate affordability and workforce education level.

While business owners are sure to like them, some of the other factors that helped send Montgomery up the list may not be great news for employees.

Cities scored points for low average salaries, long workdays and the number of people looking for jobs.

The data for the study came from the U.S. Census Bureau, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics,, the Kauffman Foundation, the Tax Foundation, LoopNet and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

Montgomery didn’t rank in the top 5 in any individual category but scored strongly across the board.

Strange said he hoped the ranking would bring Montgomery to the attention of more entrepreneurs as they start doing research on potential locations.

He pointed to Dexter Avenue, where the city is finishing up a streetscaping project. Developers are purchasing four buildings on one side of the historic street and Foshee Management Company is creating a market district on the opposite side, with loft apartments, retail stores and restaurants.

“You might have somebody who’s looking at lower Dexter as a place to start a boutique bowling place,” Strange said. “Maybe they think, ‘Everybody else is doing it, why not me?’”



Montgomery Listed as Shining Example of what works in economic development

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City of Montgomery honored in magazine article

By WSFA 12 News Staff 

March 7, 2014


The City of Montgomery, fresh off news that hard data shows its tourism economy is booming, learned Thursday it's being featured for its economic development achievements in a new magazine article.

Montgomery is being named in Southern Business & Development magazine as one of its 10 shining examples of economic developing that is working in the South.


Alabama's capital city was the state's only representative in the article [READ HERE].

"Southern Business & Development recognizes that Montgomery is an exceptional place to do business," said Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce Chairman of the Board of Directors Leslie L. Sanders. "Not only is the River Region unique in what it has to offer, our city, county, state and chamber leadership also work together extraordinarily well to enhance our quality of life. The results of their efforts have made and will continue to make this community appealing to new and existing industries."

To read the full article click the link below


City Issues Call for Artists for Selma to Montgomery Trail Sculptures

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City of Montgomery to Commission Sculptures for Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail


      Montgomery, Alabama: The City of Montgomery Public Art Commission is issuing a nationwide “call for artists” to seek proposals for permanent sculptures to be placed along the Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail.  Two life size sculptures will be placed at key locations on the trail at a plaza on the City of St. Jude campus at Fairview Avenue and Oak Street and the Five Points intersection of Mobile, Clayton, Goldwaite and Montgomery streets.

      The sculptures will be figurative in nature to enhance the visual experience of visitors to the trail and spotlight the importance of the Voting Rights March of 1965.  Over one million dollars of improvements are in progress for the approximately three miles of the trail in Montgomery.  The sculptures are a key part of the plan, which the City envisions being a permanent part of the trail far beyond the 50th anniversary celebration and appreciated for generations. The Commission envisions the sculptures providing visual images celebrating the courage of marchers and the transformative effect of the civil rights movement.  For more information or a copy of the “call for artists”, contact Melanie Golson, Public Art Commission Communications Manager, at


Southern Makers Celebrating All Thing Alabama

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Celebrating all things Alabama at the 2013 Southern Makers Festival.

An amazing event was held at the Union Station Train Shed in Downtown Montgomery on May 4th which celebrated Alabama and those who still use their hands to make artisan treasures from throughout the state. 

Over 75 Artisans and Chefs gathered at the event curated by Goodwyn Mills & Cawood, Matter Creative Studio, and Southern Accents for the benefit of EAT South—a local non-profit whose mission is to encourage healthy lifestyles through education and sustainable food production in urban areas throughout the Southeast. 

The perfect downtown day was filled with food, beverage, artisan products, demonstrations and great music.  In addition, workshops from noted talents like North Alabama-based Natalie Chanin made the day one of learning as well.  In the end, over 1500 people travelled from throughout the state and other parts of the country to enjoy this inaugural event which will surely become a Montgomery tradition for years to come.

Here are just a pictures of the day…



Urban Space with a View

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If you have driven down Maxwell Blvd in the last few day, you may notice a change.  Boat Ramp Park recently received it’s first phase of new sod, near the river view.  The next phase is being laid today.  In conjunction, the design studio submitted recommended façade improvements to the Salvation Army.  One option includes painting the exterior brick, while the other shows painted wood trim with exiting brick.  These include landscaping around the new parking lot that will be installed.  Keep your eyes peeled for continued improvements to Maxwell in the next few months.