This morning the Design Review Committee approved new illuminated signage at the top of the former Region’s Plaza building (rendering above, corner of 20th Street North and 5th Avenue). The 1976 building–home to Regions Bank before mergers and consolidations emptied it in 2007–has most recently been the subject of different hotel proposals. Viva Health–a Birmingham-based HMO–is now creating its new headquarters in the building. It will reorganize the ground floor, which previously had bank and elevator lobbies, into retail tenant space, with a Viva-run coffee shop planned on 20th Street (other tenants to be announced). Slight changes were mandated to the signage presented, but it will look essentially as depicted above, on all four sides.
As we’ve recently discussed in other contexts, while it’s great that a locally-based company is helping to fill a long-vacant tower downtown–and is adding its brand to the skyline–it’s moving from a Southside location on the other side of downtown. Will its former location be quickly filled by a new occupant? Given its proximity to UAB‘s campus, chances are high that it won’t be vacant for long.
Viva, welcome to the CBD.We encourage you especially to design your coffee shop in a way that engages passerby and enlivens your storefronts.
[thanks to Fravert for the rendering]