By W. Scott Bailey
The weather has appropriately turned ice cold just in time for Alamo Beer Co. to break ground on its new downtown brewery.
The $8 million project will be constructed near the Hays Street bridge, immediately east of Interstate 37 and only minutes from the famous Texas shrine for which the company is named. It will be the largest craft brewery in San Antonio.
The development will also include a new beer garden and administrative offices. Eugene Simor, founder and CEO of Alamo Beer, says the project is slated to be completed by the fall of 2014.
“After years of planning and community dialogue, I am excited to finally begin the process of building a brewery in the Alamo City,” Simor says. “This project is not only important to economic development near the East Side, it also marks the return of production brewing to downtown San Antonio. Additionally, it will provide a great destination for locals and visitors to our city.”
San Antonio City Councilwoman Ivy Taylor says the new brewery and beer garden will create more inner-city jobs and “spur economic development” in a historically under-served area.
The ground-breaking comes roughly six months after Texas lawmakers approved new legislation expected to create more economic opportunities for the state’s craft beer industry.
Simor says Texas brewers were hamstrung under previous laws. The new legislation opens up new revenue opportunities, allowing companies such as Alamo to now sell beers on premise.
“Texas was at a disadvantage compared to other states,” says Simor about previous restrictions. “Now, Alamo Beer Co. should be able to grow at a faster rate with the additional income that will be generated Tourism officials say the new brewery will attract more visitors to the center city.
“The Alamo Beer Co. craft brewery and beer garden is adding another special attraction to San Antonio’s growing tourism industry,” says Marco Barros, president and CEO of the San Antonio Tourism Council. “This will attract a niche of beer enthusiasts and people who identify Alamo Beer with San Antonio and Texas. ”