A change of plans in Owensboro's downtown revitalization could save the city almost two million dollars and lead to enhanced private investment in downtown. Planners are rethinking the market square plans now that the Executive Inn land is giving them more room to work with downtown.
Under the original downtown masterplan, businesses on the block north of the courthouse would be flattened to make room for a market square used as an outdoor event space and farmer's market, but officials say that plan presented too many logistical problems.
The new idea is to create a direct path from the courthouse to the new waterfront through that block.
Downtown development director Fred Reeves says everything that might have been planned for the market square can now go on the Executive Inn property. The path, called a paseo by urban designers, will create opportunities for private development on the block adjacent to the new downtown hotel and along Veterans Blvd. that were not a part of the original plan. In addition to saving money with the redesign, the private investment will keep more downtown property on the tax rolls.