Retail Specialists breaks ground on Kingfisher subdivision near Berlin

(Left to right) Retail Specialists General Counsel Steve Leara; Investor Mary Leara; Sain Associates, Inc. Assistant Project Manager Ryan Abernathy; Investor Missy Blaylock; Retail Specialists Chief Development Officer Rodney Barstein; Retail Strategies Portfolio Director Chris Bontrager; Retail Specialists COO Mead Silsbee; Retail Specialists Principal Emil Gullia; and Retail Specialists CEO Robert Jolly pose for a picture at the groundbreaking ceremony for the new Kingfisher subdivision near the town of Berlin Tuesday, June 30, 2020. (Maggie Darnell for The Cullman Tribune)

BERLIN, Ala. – The ground was broken Tuesday morning for the Kingfisher subdivision near the town of Berlin. The neighborhood is slated to have 280 new homes, estimated to sell in the $190,000 to $250,000 price range.

The Kingfisher neighborhood is being developed by Retail Specialists, with Sain Engineering handling the civil engineering. Meredith Environmental is the site contractor, and Prominence Homes is constructing the new homes.

Prominence Homes CEO Mike McMullen said residential development brings growth.

“We feel like there’s been a demand in Cullman (County) that is not being met right now, and we’re excited to be doing this project and also Ellsworth (another subdivision in development in Cullman),” said McMullen. “We feel like it’s going to be a huge benefit to the whole community having a neighborhood that is very well thought out, very well designed and also has a little bit of architectural flair. It’s offering (the solution) to a need that’s not being met right now.”

“Cullman is in great need of a development like and I’m just happy to be a part of this!” smiled Missy Blaylock. “As an investor, I trust these guys, knowing what they know, and trust them. Like I said, I think Cullman is in great need of development as we keep growing, so I hope this is successful.”

Located at the intersection of U.S. Highway 278 East and County Road 1616, the Kingfisher subdivision will feature new streets and sidewalks.

“We’re hoping as the economy bounces back and gets back to business- It’s just an uncertain time right now with real estate and the economy- but we expect things are going to bounce back third quarter, fourth quarter, and we’re looking at other opportunities definitely here in Cullman County, the city and surrounding areas,” said Retail Specialists General Counsel Steve Leara. “There’s definitely a lot of good growth in this market- a lot of economic, industrial growth.”

In a media release prior to the groundbreaking ceremony, Retail Specialists President and CEO Robert Jolly shared, “Cullman County is poised for growth over the next five years, so bringing affordable, quality housing to the market is another way we are able to assist the community with their growth. This is our second residential project in Cullman County and is a great example of how we can help in multiple facets of community development – from attracting new retailers, to transforming vacant commercial real estate space, and building new neighborhoods – our team is excited about all of the work happening in the county.”

“We are thrilled to have this new development coming to Cullman County. With the way our county is growing, this is something that has been needed for a long time. Our hope is this will serve as a catalyst for future development in our area,” said Cullman County Commissioner Kerry Watson.

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Maggie Darnell