Owensboro ready to start building Riverfront Crossing

By Ben Garbarek - bio | email | Twitter
Posted by Noah Stubbs - email

OWENSBORO, KY (WFIE) - Owensboro officials say they're ready to go ahead with plans to create a promenade from the Daviess County Courthouse to the Ohio River.

The project will take up an entire city block and developers say that once completed, the area will look dramatically different than it does now.

Downtown Owensboro has seen some small cosmetic improvements but not many large-scale changes since city leaders started their redevelopment efforts. The city will tear down the former American Bounty building off St. Ann street in the next thirty days to start construction on the new Riverfront Crossing.

"It'll be a gathering place where the people of Owensboro can come and gather and enjoy our riverfront," said Mayor Ron Payne.  "I think it's going to be an attractive feature."

"The Riverfront Crossing is actually a gathering place," said Downtown Development Director Fred Reeves.  "If you look it'll be right across from the courthouse. It'll have four broad pedestrian venues down there where you can have outdoor dining, outdoor vendors."

City leaders say Riverfront Crossing will connect the proposed convention center and downtown hotel with the new Smothers Park on the Ohio River.

"We're going to build a tire-like feature that will be open in the center," said Reeves.  "You can have small musical ensembles play in there but mainly it's just a gathering space is what it is. It's a nice, grand walkway from the courthouse to the new water features."

The mayor says Riverfront Crossing will be the glue that holds together all the new pieces of downtown Owensboro.

"It will be a world class riverfront," Payne said.  "If you can imagine from the RiverPark Center to the east here all the way to that tennis facility and this is all going to be a beautiful riverfront, walking paths, all of these features, it's going to be a tourist attraction."

Downtown developers say part of the plan for riverfront crossing also includes burying utility lines like this one and also renovating the back end of several buildings along Second Street.

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