AP NEWS

Catlettsburg resident hopeful for growth following demo

May 18, 2019

CATLETTSBURG, Ky. — Two historic buildings were demolished earlier this week in downtown Catlettsburg, Kentucky, after city officials deemed them a safety hazard and their conditions were irreparable.

In late April, the condition of the buildings prompted an emergency meeting of City Council to discuss the future of the property.

Along with the two buildings that were demolished, a third building located on the same block was purchased by local resident J.C. Williams, who plans to renovate the lone building adjacent to the two that were demolished.

“I was glad I was able to save the one. I’ve got some plans to renovate the building and make it a nice space for a business to move into. Where the other two buildings were is a good space for some off-street parking, which there never seems to be enough of here,” Williams said. “Usually businesses have one or two spots on the street and that’s it.”

Before moving anything in, though, the building must be repaired and the demolition site cleared.

It hasn’t all been good news for Williams, though. The demolition has been countered with some frustrations from Catlettsburg residents, but Williams emphasized that in saving one of the three buildings, he’s preserving a small part of the property’s history. If left in the city’s hands, all three buildings would have been torn down.

Instead, Williams submitted his offer to buy the property, which had been rejected about a year ago but was accepted this time around.

“Somebody had to start a trend and get things moving in the downtown area. I guess this is just my way of putting my money where my mouth is,” Williams said. “It’s not a home run right now by any means, but I think it’s a good thing for this city.”

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