As a steadfast resident of Bluff Park/Hoover for over 55 years and a founding member of the Hoover Arts Alliance in 2007, I have witnessed the evolution of our community firsthand. My commitment to Hoover's cultural enrichment runs deep, and now, more than ever is the time to turn our collective vision into reality.

Throughout my tenure in Hoover, I have seen the city grow and flourish, thanks in part to the tireless efforts of citizens advocating for essential amenities. I vividly remember the battles waged to establish our city library, school system and senior center. City officials initially dismissed the need for a city library, insisting we didn't require one when the closest library was in Homewood. Yet, through relentless advocacy, we saw the Hoover Library emerge as one of the most outstanding facilities in the southeast, serving as a cornerstone of our community.

Similarly, when city officials doubted the necessity of establishing our own school system, I served on the committee that collaborated with Vanderbilt University to demonstrate otherwise. The subsequent establishment of the Hoover school system has undeniably transformed our city for the better.

Furthermore, the city initially resisted the idea of a senior center until one determined woman, Connie Lees, pressed for years until the city relented. The result? One of the best senior centers in the state, enhancing the lives of countless residents.

These achievements weren't handed to us—they were the result of citizens making their needs and wishes unequivocally clear to the city, and being willing to fight tooth and nail to make them a reality.

Now is the time for Hoover to reaffirm its commitment to the arts and invest in the future of our community. The proposed Center for the Arts in Stadium Trace Phase 2 presents a remarkable opportunity for Hoover. With a developer who boasts a commendable track record and strong ties to our city, alongside their visionary plans for the Art Walk in Stadium Trace Phase 1 for local artists to display their work, we have the assurance of a project that aligns with Hoover's best interests. This location offers unparalleled potential for a thriving cultural hub, one that will not only cater to the needs of residents but also elevate Hoover as a cultural destination.

Let's draw inspiration from our past successes and unite behind this transformative project. Just as we fought for our library, school system and senior center, we must continue to champion initiatives that enrich our community and ensure Hoover remains a vibrant and complete city.

Linda Chastain is a Hoover resident and founding member of the Hoover Arts Alliance.

The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information to

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