Residents, city leaders optimistic for neighborhood with future mental health clinic on horizon


SURROUNDING AREA.>>IT’S REALLY CHANGING FOR THE
BETTER. MARY: THE COMMUNITY SURROUNDING
AMBER ALLEN’S NEIGHBORHOOD. SHE LIVES NEAR CRESTWOOD
BOULEVARD IN BIRMINGHAM. BUT —
>>THEY SEE EVERYTHING ELSE AND
SO THEY DON’T THINK IT’S
INVITING OR WELCOMING. THEY JUST PASS IT BY AND WANT TO
GET OUT AS QUICKLY AS THEY CAN. MARY: SHE, ALONG WITH CITY
LEADERS, THINK THAT MAY CHANGE
THANKS TO A BIG PROJECT COMING
TO THE AREA. THE BIRMINGHAM V.A. MEDICAL
CENTER WILL SOON START WORK ON
NEW 60,000-SQUARE-FOOT MENTAL
HEALTH CLINIC OFF CRESTWOO
BOULEVARD.>>WHERE THE V.A. CLINIC IS
SLATED TO GO IS AN AREA THAT’S
STRUGGLED WITH A LOT OF CRIME
ISSUES. MARY: CITY COUNCILOR HUNTER
WILLIAMS REPRESENTS THAT AREA. HE THINKS THE PROJECT COULD
CHANGE THE DYNAMIC OF THE
NEIGHBORHOOD.>>HOPEFULLY, IT’S GOING TO BE A
JUMPING OFF POINT FOR THAT
ENTIRE CORRIDOR THAT WE’LL BE
ABLE TO REVITALIZE THE CRESTWOOD
AREA. MARY: CONSTRUCTION ON THE CLINIC
SHOULD GET UNDERWAY FOR THIS
CLINIC BY THE START OF THE YEAR
AND IT’S EXPECTED TO OPEN BY
FALL 2021.>>WHEN YOU SEE SUCH A BEAUTIFUL
BUILDING, YOU’RE LIKE OK, THIS
IS A SAFE PLACE. MARY: NEIGHBORS HOPING SOMETHING
NEW CAN BE THE BOOM THEY’VE BEEN
WAITING FOR.>>MAYBE THEY CARE TO GO UP AND
DOWN CRESTWOOD TO SEE WHAT ELSE
WE HAVE TO OFFER. MARY: KNOWING CHANGE IS JUST
AROUND THE CORNER. IN B

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