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New Deal Calls For CentrePointe To Change Hands

Tom Godell

Under the terms of a new, still-evolving agreement, CentrePointe developers the Webb Companies would hand over the project reins to a New York real estate firm and other investors.

The Lexington Herald-Leader reports Bridgeton Holdings, headquartered in the Big Apple, would inherit the long-postponed project with a team of investors including Lexington resident and former JP Morgan Chase employee Matt Collins funding it.

"Having a hole in the center of downtown is not just aesthetically a blight, but it's an economic blight," Collins tells WKYT-TV. "And we are incredibly excited and privileged to have the opportunity to invest in Lexington and make a difference downtown." 

The investors say CentrePointe could be in for yet another redesign, a different name, and – in a new twist – direct city involvement.

While the original vision included an office tower, the group wants to scrap those plans, create a new city hall, and add local government to the list of tenants. Meanwhile, the Webb Companies would be reduced to minority partners in the venture with no say in designing the development.

In April, developers and the city appeared to be on a crash course with both sides threatening legal action over an agreement that mandated lapses of no longer than 60 days for work on the site. Mason Miller, an attorney for the city, tells the paper that deal remains under discussion and the city is still learning the details of the new proposal.

Update (6:04 PM): At a council meeting Tuesday, Mayor Jim Gray weighed in, saying, "It has come to our attention that a number of media reports concerning the CentrePointe development are discussing the possibility of relocating city hall to the property. So it is perfectly clear, while the developer may want the city to move city hall and they are free to make any proposal, there has been no commitment to do that and there will not be any commitment to do that or anything else on the property unless it is in the best interest of the taxpayers. Our taxpayers have options and our city has and will continue to consider all possible options."

Josh James fell in love with college radio at Western Kentucky University's student station, New Rock 92 (now Revolution 91.7). After working as a DJ and program director, he knew he wanted to come home to Lexington and try his hand in public radio.
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