By ARTHUR L. MACK
MOBILE — As expected, the Mobile City Council on Tuesday approved a contract that would allow Carnival Cruise Lines to dock in Mobile for another year. The contract, which came in the form of a resolution amendment, is for one year, and will go through November 26, 2018.
“With this renewal, it means that Carnival will be here through December 2018,” said Mayor Sandy Stimpson. “Since Carnival has been back here, it has brought the city $4.7 million in gross revenue. There have been 190,000 cruisers coming through Mobile and they spent more than $18 million dollars. In addition, the Fantasy has been ranked No. 1 by Carnival in friendliness and hospitality.”
Stimpson said the one-year contract was Carnival’s idea.
“Obviously, we want to cooperate with them,” he said.
Councilmembers voted to approve a contract with Phillips Monuments, LLC for Unity Point Park, which is located at the intersection of Broad Street and Springhill Avenue, in the amount of $29,500. There was corrosion at the base of the park’s sculpture, and the money will be used to repair its base so the water can flow properly.
Three TAP grants were also approved by the city council. The first is one for sidewalk improvements on Old Shell Road east of Myrtlewood Lane, located in District 7. There will be $161,137.08 in grant funds and $40,284.27 in a match provided by the Village of Spring Hill.
The second TAP grant agreement is also for sidewalk improvements, this one on Dauphin Island Parkway in District 3. There will be $138,529.51, while the city’s match is $34,632.58. The third is for the Old Shell Road Phase II in District 1. The grant funds are $200,412.80, with the city’s match at $50,103.20.
Also on Tuesday, councilmembers voted to discuss the authorization of the sale of the old City Hall building, located at 350 St. Joseph Street, during the Aug. 15 meeting. The property, also known as the Seaman’s Club, which has been vacant for several years, was considered an eyesore.
Now, however, a group is making plans to buy the property, which will be sold for $548,000. According to Brad Christensen of the city’s real estate department, the developers plan to convert the building into multi-family and single-family dwellings.
“They are anxious to move fast,” Christensen told councilmembers.
Christensen said he believes the developers are also interested in purchasing a building on Water Street that formerly housed Klub Krush. That, along with the impending purchase of the old City Hall building, excited Councilman Levon Manzie.
“I’m excited to see this on the agenda,” he said. “The nightclub has been an issue for a while. The fact that we’re eradicating that blight is exciting. We finally got somebody who wants it and with all the development going on now, there’s a lot of synergy downtown.”