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July 5: Nashville plans to launch a bike-share program similar to what is now in place (and wildly popular) in cities like Denver, Washington, and Montreal. Paris launched the first bike-sharing system (called Velib) in 2007; it allows users to rent bikes from one station and return them to any station in the city. While it would be great to have a similar system in place here in Huntsville, it would require a significant investment in bike infrastructure (bike lanes, greenways) in order to be successful (and safe).
July 12: Downtown Madison is getting a slight expansion. A 20,000 square foot building is proposed, with retail space on the ground floor and office space on the upper floor.
July 19: Momma Goldberg's Deli, an Auburn tradition, is opening its first Huntsville restaurant in the Village on Whitesburg (Fresh Market center). An opening is expected in late August or early September, just in time for football season.
July 26: The $2.6 million Space Center-Botanical Garden tramway is now open, running three times a day, two days a week. The funding was provided by congressional earmarks from Senator Richard Shelby (R-Tuscaloosa). I asked the Facebook followers of the blog what they would have done with the money if they were the senator. Some of the responses included a Research Park circulator bus and more greenways.
July 29: Newk's Express Cafe is opening its second Huntsville restaurant on Whitesburg in the Piedmont Point shopping center (Publix).
July 30: Jon Busdecker, entertainment writer for the Times, is leaving for Orlando, but not before giving his ideas for improving downtown to cater to the younger crowd. Before anything happens, we need masses of people downtown, patronizing the existing businesses and activities and demanding that more should be done, like the "Bus." As soon as Pane e Vino has the same wait time as, say, PF Chang's at Bridge Street, the pieces will fall into place quickly.
Some of my ideas for improving downtown, along with some from others, can be found here.