WACO, TX — After almost a year's worth of rebuilding and renovation, some Waco developers have taken a notorious nightclub and turned it into a community oasis of commerce.
Perhaps the most important component of this development is the 10 businesses that have such a huge stake in the project's success.
Holly Duke remembers the many nightclubs that once occupied the huge building at the southwest corner of Highways 6 and 84.
"Oh, I totally do. What do you remember about? We would joke about going to Club Alazon, you know," she recalled.
Because no one can forget those many clubs' collective reputation.
"What was their reputation? Well, Hmmmmmm," she mused.
Mama always said, if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all but now, Holly has lots of nice things to say about this location since its transformation into an upscale shopping center.
She showed us around her business, "Club Pilates" which offers special group instruction on a popular fitness regimen with individualized equipment.
Pilates became the first tenant in the new shopping center after its transformation from nuisance to attraction got underway.
"To go through and redevelop the 25,000-foot shopping center and for people being comfortable enough to go into it was, was amazing," said Leasing agent Gregg Glime of Coldwell Banker Commercial Real Estate.
Glime went one step further, in making this a community asset, he found ten small businesses to move in. That's one of the amazing things about this development.
Each and every business here is a local business with a local owner. You don’t find that everywhere. It gives new opportunities to more of our neighbors.
After you strengthen your core at pilates, you can replenish next door at a gourmet Italian restaurant with fresh pasta and the most complete wine cellar for miles around.
The rest of the businesses here will open over the next several weeks. One of the things that makes Glime most proud is recruiting all local.
"We've got 10 locally operated businesses that just stayed driven to get in here. I think they're gonna do fantastic. I'm a big proponent of local business and I'm really excited we filled it up with local business," he said.
Now, Holly Duke has finally "made it" to Club Alazon in the form of her new business.
"I think a lot of people didn't have the vision to see this place. And luckily, Some people did, and my boss and our owner saw the value in this location," she said.
A location, at one of the busiest intersections in Central Texas, where more local business provides more local jobs.