PHENIX CITY, AL (WTVM) - This is the future home of the American Legion Post 135 in Phenix City. It's a state-of-the-art building, surrounded by a park that will honor heroes from each service branch throughout the state of Alabama as part of a joint effort.
"The total cost will be $6.5 million," explained interim City Manager Steve Smith. "Between the American Legion and the city, we'll be putting $3 million into the project and then we're going to raise $3.5 million in the community to finish the park."
Leroy Davis, commander of American Legion Post 135, says the project is a result of a land-swap proposed by Mayor Eddie Lowe.
"We were looking for property to buy up on Highway 280 to build a new post and everything," added Davis. "And when the Mayor came to us and said 'hey I have a plan' and we looked at it and said hey, that's a great plan. We bought into it right away."
This plan would have the city buy the current building off of 13th Street from the American Legion to help Post 135 build a new and improved building.
The 18,000 square foot building is expected to overlook Phenix City by sitting at the city's highest point, which we're told is the old Cobb Hospital site off of 20th Avenue.
Smith tells us once the building is finished, work on the Homage Park will begin -- boasting a reflection pool near a flag court, two memorial walls, and a memorial walk that people can pay to have their fallen heroes honored.
"We've met with a lot of people in the community. We've got a terrific amount of support and we're very confident we can get this project done," Smith says.
Smith tells us the project is in the planning phase at this time. He says the land for the project has already been cleared and donations are still needed to push the project to the next stage.If all goes well, Smith says the city hopes to break ground on the new building in 2015.