By Ryan Michaels
The Birmingham Times
Birmingham City Council on Tuesday unanimously approved a $1.3 million incentive for the owners of Birmingham restaurant Yo’ Mama’s to relocate to long-unused retail space inside a downtown parking garage.
Owners of Yo’ Mama’s, which is currently located at 2328 2nd Avenue North, would make improvements on the retail space using their own money and the city’s $1.3 million.
City officials said the move gives the restaurant additional space and also helps downtown by filling vacant 5,760-square-foot retail space on the ground floor Birmingham Parking Authority (BPA)’s Deck 3, at 401 North 20th Street, which was remodeled in 2004.
Even if it were not Yo’ Mama’s the improvements on the building are positive for the city, said Cornell Wesley, director of the Innovation and Economic Opportunity for the city,
“This puts that particular asset [Deck 3] back working for us. It has never been working for us, so we’re excited about being able to have this asset in our downtown community fully built out,” Wesley said.
Councilor Darrell O’Quinn said the deal is a “big accomplishment” for André Davis, who has been CEO of the BPA since 2021.
“Deck 3 was designed with this intent in mind, and prior to Mr. Davis becoming the CEO at the [BPA], the space had been advertised by BPA without success for many years, so it’s awesome to see new leadership step in and really make things happen,” O’Quinn said.
Council President Pro Tem Crystal Smitherman said Birmingham’s parking decks “need to generate more money” and that this deal is “innovative.”