Spiller Building

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View from the 7th Street in December 2009.

The Spiller Building (originally Allen & Jemison Warehouse) is a four story, 52,000 square foot warehouse building located on the corner of Greensboro Avenue and 7th Street in Tuscaloosa.

It was constructed by Allen & Jemison in 1903 to replace their earlier warehouse on the former site of the the 1846 Tuscaloosa County Courthouse. The oak timbers were brought from Mississippi.

In 1975 the building was purchased by Spiller Furniture as a downtown showroom. That company closed in 2002 and sold the building to the adjacent Christ Episcopal Church. Unable to maintain the 100-year-old structure, the church's vestry voted in 2008 to pursue demolition.

The Tuscaloosa County Preservation Society applied for it to be listed on the Alabama Historical Commission's annual "Places in Peril" list and endeavored to find a compatible use.

In December 2009 the Tuscaloosa City Council voted to lease the building from the church and renovate the ground floor as the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center, managed by the Arts Council of Tuscaloosa. A grant from the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development allowed the city to proceed with their plans. However, the lowest bid for renovation work, which was budgeted at $1.33 million, came in $1.9 million, forcing the city to seek ways to cut cost from the project.

References

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  • Stevenson, Tommy (April 26, 2009) "Demolition looms for downtown Spiller Building". Tuscaloosa News
  • "Arts center could become downtown hub." (December 18, 2009) Tuscaloosa News
  • Dewitt, Robert (September 27, 2010) "City Council rejects bids for renovation." Tuscaloosa News