- This article is about the proposed development in Mountain Brook. For the Birmingham park, see Lane Park.
Lane Parke of Mountain Brook Village is a 14-acre, $130-140 million commercial, office and residential development planned for a site near Mountain Brook Village. The owners of the property, which includes the Mountain Brook Shopping Center (1955) and Park Lane Apartments (1942), are Rele Evans and his son John, incorporated as "Evson, Inc."
MVE & Partners of California completed master planning for the proposed development, assisted locally by Goodwyn, Mills and Cawood. The first proposal called for phased construction, coordinating with the Watkins Brook Flood Hazard Mitigation Project being done by the City of Mountain Brook to reduce the risk of damage caused by flooding of nearby Watkins Brook. The first phase would have included space for retail tenants of the shopping center whose businesses would otherwise have been disrupted by the flood mitigation project. Ultimately the center would have had 206,000 square feet of retail and commercial space accessed from pedestrian-friendly sidewalks and plazas, centering on a new "main street" at the center of the site. Ken Findley and Retail Specialists, Inc were contracted to target local, regional and national retailers to fill the other available spaces.
The initial project's 1,200+ parking spaces would have include street-side parking, parking lots and covered parking. Automobile access to the property would have been cut from the current 12 points to five. The proposal included a 75-room boutique hotel and 45,000 square feet of office space above the shops. The final phase of development was set to include a residential component of condominiums, town houses and/or apartments.
The project plan was subject to approval by the city's planning commission, city council, and architectural review board. The project was opposed by the newly-formed Friends of Mountain Brook Villages. In early 2010 the developer acknowledged that it was looking at making changes to the proposed project to satisfy some of the objections raised by residents.
In May 2010, a redesigned development was announced. It was reduced to 14 acres instead of 27, preserving the majority of the existing apartment complex. The new Lane Parke design calls for 206,000 square feet of retail space, an 85-room hotel, 20 townhomes and enclosed parking decks. It also incorporates three park areas and nine access points into the development. The new proposal attempts to mimic the existing village more closely to appear as if it is a natural extension. A buffer block was introduced, with one- and two-story retail shops that will replace the current Mountain Brook Shopping Center along Culver Road and a new road to be created between Montevallo Road and Lane Park Road, to be called Jemison Lane. The change to a "planned unit development" zoning district was approved by the Mountain Brook City council on June 28, 2010.
With delays in the Watkins Creek flood mitigation project, the Lane Parke development was put on hold. In August 2011 Evson announced that the Daniel Corporation would be the developer of the project, which would be redesigned at a slightly smaller scale. Mountain Brook's City Council approved rezoning for the revised project on May 21, 2012.
Because the project site includes areas of flood plain, the developer is required to raise the base grade of the site by two to three feet, meaning that existing trees will be destroyed, including some in the right-of-way facing the Birmingham Botanical Gardens, which have to be removed to widen the street.
In October 2012 the developers announced that the Kessler Collection had agreed to operate a 100-room Grand Bohemian Mountain Brook hotel in the development. That project broke ground in January 2014 and opened on October 1, 2015.
The first retail tenants were announced in May 2015:
- Phase I
- A'mano gifts, opened October 2016
- B Prince, opened October 2016
- Char Bar 7, opened October 2016
- Kinnucan's Specialty Outfitters, August 2016-January 2019
- Local Taco, opened October 2016
- M & S Interiors, opened October 2016
- Platinum Pilates, opened October 2016
- Revelator Coffee, opened October 2016
- Western Supermarket, opened October 2016
- Yeah! Burger
- Phase II
- Tomberlin, Michael (April 5, 2009) "Family plans $200 million Mountain Brook Village shop, hotel development." The Birmingham News
- Cooper, Lauren B. (November 17, 2009) " Leasing agent: Lane Parke project in Mountain Brook ready to go]." Birmingham Business Journal - accessed November 18, 2009.
- Cooper, Lauren B. (November 30, 2009) "Lane Parke group says 60% oppose project." Birmingham Business Journal - accessed December 8, 2009
- Thornton, William (February 20, 2010) "Builder rethinks plans for Lane Parke." The Birmingham News
- Thornton, William (May 24, 2010) "Lane Parke redesign smaller, made to fit into Mountain Brook Village style." The Birmingham News
- Thornton, William (June 12, 2010) "Mountain Brook's Lane Parke backers, foes to get say at public hearing." The Birmingham News
- Thornton, William (June 28, 2010) "Mountain Brook City Council approves Lane Parke at Mountain Brook Village rezoning." The Birmingham News
- Thornton, William (August 25, 2011) "Mountain Brook's Lane Parke development to get redesign, new partner." 'The Birmingham News
- Thornton, William (May 21, 2012) "Mountain Brook City Council approves Lane Parke rezoning." The Birmingham News
- Geiss, Chuck (September 6, 2012) "Naked Birmingham". Black & White
- Rodriguez, Ana (May 1, 2015) "Mountain Brook's Lane Parke announces its first slate of retail tenants." The Birmingham News
- Coon, Lexi (September 27, 2016) "The wait is over" Village Living
- Edgemon, Erin (January 8, 2018) "More retailers coming to Mountain Brook's Lane Parke." The Birmingham News
- Lane Parke website