Birmingham's entertainment district has opened its first major business! Around 11 a.m. on Thursday, the Westin Hotel had its opening ceremony along with ribbon cutting.
Birmingham Mayor William Bell, along with executives from the hotel and Todd English Pub cut the ribbon this morning. Tad Snider, Executive Director of the BJCC, says the hotel is already seeing success. So far, five companies have booked their conventions at the BJCC because of the Westin and Sheraton hotels across the street.
Most businesses require one thousand hotel rooms and the Sheraton only has about 800. With the addition of the Westin, that puts the complex over the one thousand mark.
Snider says now that the hotel is open, developers will focus on building up the entertainment district. He says there is room for 6 or 7 more restaurants and bars and one restaurant will start developing in the next month.
Once the entertainment district is developed, City Councilman Johnathan Austin says he is going to draft an ordinance that would allow people to have open containers in that area. The Alabama Legislature passed a bill last year so local cities can have more control over designated entertainment districts.
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