"Performa CEO John Elkington thinks Birmingham's district could outdo Louisville's Fourth Street Live! and Memphis' Beale Street, perhaps attracting as many as 6 million visitors a year.
"He said he reached that estimate by tallying the 2.5 million people who already attend events at the BJCC annually plus outside tourists and area residents who, Elkington says, will be attracted by the well-known restaurants and retailers Performa plans to court.
"In addition, Performa plans to capitalize on the attention Birmingham has received as home of two American Idol winners and a runner-up, plus court participation from famous entertainers born in the metro area, said Cato Walker, a Performa executive who handles development of its districts outside Memphis."
The folks in Birmingham might want to chat with the folks in Jackson, MS, Shreveport, and Cincinnati before getting too excited about the "next Beale Street." They would tell you these things seldom develop as smoothly as advertised, and the original is pretty hard to duplicate. But hope springs eternal, as does Performa, apparently.
Read the rest of the Birmingham News article.