Exit 304 lights getting upgraded; lease discussed for old Cotton Gin property

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The Good Hope City Council got a close-up look at new lights that are being installed around Exit 304. (Christy Perry for The Cullman Tribune)

GOOD HOPE, Ala. – Things are getting a little brighter in Good Hope. Lighting around Interstate 65 Exit 304/Alabama Highway 69 is being updated with new LED fixtures. Good Mayor Jerry Bartlett on Monday night told the council that work to replace the 58 existing lights has begun and will continue throughout the week. 

The council said the cost of the new lights was quoted as $52,388.50 plus labor. The council approved the surplusage of the old fixtures through GovDeals. 

The council also approved a resolution, which it drafted at its last meeting, to enter into a sewer contract with the City of Cullman to support an as-yet-unnamed development along County Road 222. The development agreement hinges on the City of Good Hope being able to provide sewer services; however, until Good Hope can extend its sewer lines, the City of Cullman offered to allow the development to tie on to its system. 

Bartlett said of the cost of the contract, “We won’t know exactly until we hammer out all the details. Probably $40-$50,000 with all fees added.”

Councilwoman Susan Eller, who also works for the Cullman Economic Development Agency, abstained from voting on the resolution, as advised by City Attorney Rita Nicholas. 

At the council’s last meeting, Bartlett estimated that it will take at least a year once building out of the sewer system begins for work to be completed. He said he hopes to make an official announcement in the coming weeks to reveal the new business. 

Although the City of Good Hope has not revealed the nature of the new business, the Cullman City Council on Monday night approved a resolution, “to authorize the mayor to enter into an intergovernmental contract to receive wastewater from the City of Good Hope, to aid in the construction of a gas station near the Good Hope/Cullman line along County Road 222.”

The council had its first reading of a resolution to enter into a lease with Stash House Properties, LLC at The Cotton Gin restaurant property at 123 Lindsey Road, which the council voted to purchase on Jan. 11, 2021. Bartlett did not reveal what type of business will be leasing the property, but said, “It’s a multi-faceted business, and we have been working on this for a while now.”

The lease includes an option for Stash House Properties to purchase the property if desired. Bartlett said, “There’s a lot of improvements they are doing to the building. They are going to make it bigger. They are doing a substantial amount of work on our building.”

A second reading will take place at Good Hope’s March 8 council meeting. 

Back on Jan. 25, 2021, the council approved the sale of nearly 3.3 acres beside Good Hope Pharmacy, which is located along County Road 437 next to The Cotton Gin property.

Councilman Taft Dillashaw updated the council on baseball and softball sign-ups. He reported that 162 children have signed up for this year’s ball season. The coaches are scheduled to meet Tuesday night at 6 p.m. Practice will begin in March with games starting in early April. 

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Christy Perry

christy@cullmantribune.com