New bowling alley aiding in county's economic recovery

MIDLOTHIAN, VA (WWBT) - A new entertainment facility will give families something to do while helping to raise Chesterfield County out of its economic slump.

Uptown Alley, an entertainment complex, will be the first of its kind in Virginia. The Uphoff Family, which is behind Uppy's convenient stores, just broke ground on the bowling alley that is near Route 288 and Hull Street Road at the Commonwealth Center.

Uptown Alley is set to create at least 100 full-time or part-time jobs. Earlier this year, county budget writers said the number of foreclosures is down. A mega sports facility, SportsQuest, is now open.

"A California experience of entertainment. A Disney experience here in Chesterfield," said Steve Uphoff as he described Uptown Alley from a podium at the Tuesday morning groundbreaking ceremony.

It will be a two-story facility featuring 40 bowling lanes. There will be two restaurants, an arcade, a bar that will easily seat 100 and private rooms.

"We can have a family floor for young people," said Uphoff. "We can have a more adult theme on the second."

Chesterfield County Administrator Jay Stegmaier said all county residents will benefit from the estimated annual tax revenue of $153,000.

"It means support for our police and fire departments, support for our teachers, jobs for the people who live here," he said.

Chesterfield is slowly riding out of the recession. On Monday, we watched as an Olympic-sized pool, shipped in crates, was dropped off at a new aquatics center. Tuesday, the spotlight was on Uptown Alley. On Wednesday, a new recycling center opens in southern Chesterfield near the Shoosmith Landfill off of Iron Bridge Road.

"All of these things are creating jobs and investment in the community," said Stegmaier.

As the man behind the project promises big results, "We promise you the best service, the best food and the best entertainment experience." People are ready to dust off their bowling shoes.

The $20 million project will go up in two phases: Uptown Alley, and a hotel and spa.

The bowling alley is scheduled to open June 2012 and will feature a 29-foot stainless steal bowling pin on the roof.

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