Owners of Gabe's Tower Reach Agreement to Sell

A new twist in the saga over the future of Gabe's Tower, decades ago a crown jewel on the Owensboro skyline.

The building, eyed by the city for demolition, reportedly now has a new owner. This comes just as city officials approved a municipal order, authorizing the tower's purchase and eventually its demolition.

The order city commissioners voted on allowed them to make an offer of $225,000 to a group based out of Pennsylvania. Now, it appears they'll be negotiating with a local resident.

For a building that has stood still for so many years, there's been a lot of twists and turns.

"There's still a lot of i's to dot and t's to cross," says Owensboro City Attorney Ed Ray.

The Pennsylvania based group entered in to an agreement to sell the tower to local resident Bob Zimmerman. The group first bought it in 2013, with high profile plans to turn it in to a hotel.  But those plans, like the tower, withered on the vine.  Ray says the ownership we discovered today could change negotiations, but not if the city plans  to go through eminent domain.

"Whether were negotiating with the owners or former owners, whatever the case may be, out in Pennsylvania, or here locally, the outcome is still the same, and that is to gain control of the facility, and then to raze that," Ray says.

Johnny Goodman, who owns a nearby barbershop, says it'd be better for the neighborhood if the tower was brought down.  It could also bring more business back to the Triplett Twist neighborhood.

"I think it would help. That tower sitting over there, vacant, looking like it is, hasn't helped for renting spaces at all," Goodman says. "Hopefully, it will."

Ray told me earlier this afternoon if negotiations do not work out, then they'll be ready to file for condemnation as soon as possible. No word on how long this will take considering the new developments surrounding ownership.


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