Roy L. Williams
Hoover satellite courthouse
A new Hoover satellite courthouse for Jefferson County auto tag and licenses/renewals is being built in this spot in Hoover Court Town Center on U.S. 31 near Green Valley Drugs.
A new satellite car tag and license office could open in Hoover Court Town Center on U.S. 31 by mid-to-late October, according to an update presented at a Jefferson County Commission meeting today, July 28.
Construction workers have spent the past several months converting an empty store front in the strip retail center. Asked by Jefferson County Commissioner David Carrington how the renovation is progressing, commissioners were told the exterior and interior work on the building should be completed by Sept. 6. It would then take county officials about two to three weeks to install computers and other equipment to handle auto tag and license transactions.
“So that means mid to late October before it would open,” Carrington said.
Currently, Hoover area residents buy auto tags and licenses at a satellite office housed in the Hoover Met stadium just off Alabama 150. The new Hoover satellite office fills a longtime desire for residents of Hoover desiring to avoid driving to the Jefferson County Courthouse in downtown Birmingham or dealing with traffic congestion on Alabama 150.
At the new satellite office, residents of the Hoover area will be able to buy new vehicle tags, boating licenses and fill out vehicle title applications. Hoover City Councilman John Lyda said it will fill a need for citizens of Hoover, Vestavia Hills and other nearby cities. Currently, Jefferson County citizens get those services at the downtown Birmingham county courthouse or satellite offices in Bessemer, Center Point or the Hoover Met.
"The Jefferson Court satellite courthouse project is a welcome addition to Hoover not only for our residents but also for the tens of thousands of Jefferson County residents who travel to our city daily for work or shopping," Lyda said. "This project will bring a convenience to all over the mountain communities while also relieving crowds at the downtown and Bessemer courthouses. It's truly a win-win for all stakeholders."
The Hoover Met office only has three windows, whereas the new satellite office in Hoover Court Town Center will have 12 windows, speeding up lines. Jefferson County Manager Tony Petelos, a former mayor of Hoover, has said finding a more convenient permanent site in Hoover has been a priority for the commission.
As of July 28, construction workers have been putting in a new sidewalk in front of the satellite office site and doing interior work converting it for use as a car tag/licensing facility.
Bill Box, owner/pharmacist of Green Valley Drugs in Hoover Court Town Center, said the new satellite car tag office will be a shot in the arm for both business owners in the center and Hoover residents. Box had hoped the project would have been done quicker. Jefferson County Commission officials had first estimated it would open by late summer.
"It will be a wonderful addition to our center," said Box, whose father founded Green Valley Drugs in the center in 1961.
The county agreement with Hoover Court Investors LLC/Murer LLC calls for a 10-year initial term with two five-year renewal options. Under the plan, the Jefferson County Commission will pay the owner $500,000 to build-out the satellite tag office. The remaining $350,000 will be used to pay for architects/engineers, security cameras, phones/furniture and burglar alarms.