Hometown Tour Ashford: Ashford’s economic growth over the years

Hometown Tour Ashford: New business boosts city's growth
Published: May. 26, 2023 at 8:49 PM CDT
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ASHFORD, Ala. (WTVY) -Ashford’s quick growth has brought necessities to the community while keeping its small-town feel.

Incorporated back in 1891, Ashford has been an Alabama city for more than 130 years.

Though the city has been recognized for a long time, it’s most notable growth spurt has been in recent years.

“When I became mayor in January of 2018, at that time, we had a lot of things in the works for Ashford,” said Carole Barfield, Ashford’s Mayor. Since then, we’ve done a lot of projects and seen a lot of new businesses come in.”

Just three years ago, the downtown strip transformed from a handful of businesses to shops on every corner.

Those new businesses are even enticing people in neighboring states to make the drive over.

“We have a big customer draw out of Georgia and Florida,” said Gary Gibson, owner of Big Mike’s Restaurant. “It has been truly amazing with the growth that we’ve seen here.”

Ashford celebrates local businesses owners. The owners themselves root for each other’s success.

“There’s no reason for us to have to go to Dothan,” said Gibson. “Restaurant-wise, we have anything you want to offer here downtown. We also have the hardware store that has a deli, we have the BBQ restaurant downtown along with our mexican restaurant, we have a new Family Dollar and Dollar Tree along with the Dollar General.”

“You should be able to get anything you want right here in the city of Ashford.”

As more businesses come to town, so does more money, leaving the city with no where to go but up.

“From what our numbers show in our business taxes, our citizens are visiting and spending their money in town,” said Barfield. “That’s really important to us and the city.”

Ashford has continued to grow in every fashion, seeing a 20% increase in population since 2000.

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