Whitewater Center Could Bring Huge Economic Impact to West Montgomery

Project Catalyst (Source: Montgomery County Commission)

Montgomery city, county and civic leaders have high hopes for the proposed whitewater recreation center that was announced today. They say the center will be built off Maxwell Boulevard near Maxwell Air Force Base, just off Interstate 65.

The center is expected to generate $30 million each year for the economy when it is scheduled to open in March 2022. It will create an estimated 125 jobs. But government and business leaders hope this planned attraction, which they call “Project Catalyst” will spark a rebirth in that section of the city.

The city is already attracting additional tourists with the 2018 opening of the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, created by the Equal Justice Initiative.  It’s hoped that visitors will spend even more time in the Capital City to take in the activities at the whitewater center.

“If those people stay one additional day, it will be huge economic impact and those tax dollars will be able to be in this community, it will help local businesses,” Montgomery Chamber of Commerce Chairman Willie Durham told Alabama News Network.

But there’s one obstacle to overcome. The Salvation Army is located on the property where the whitewater center will be built.

“We’re in discussion with multiple locations to relocate the Salvation Army,” Durham said.

Nearby, the Southern Shutter Company has been on Maxwell Boulevard for nearly 40 years. Owner Steven Philhower says he welcomes the whitewater park.

“I’ve been coming to work here since I was a small child, and it’s always been kind of the worst part of town, and it’s going to be unbelievable to be going to work in the best part of town,” he said.

Construction is expected to start in the fall of 2020.

Categories: Montgomery, News