UPDATE: River City Co. to turn historic downtown building into a - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: River City Co. to turn historic downtown building into apartments

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) - UPDATE: Part of the downtown Chattanooga landscape will soon be changing. An old, abandoned building will be turned into middle-class apartments. River City Company, with help from the Benwood Foundation, recently bought the old Ross Hotel for $1.2 million. The building, on the corner of Georgia Avenue and Patten Parkway, is abandoned but there's new plans to breath new life into an old building.

Molly Williams and her co-worker Natasha Bradford work at Cadence Coffee across the street from the old Ross hotel. They say the 20 new middle class apartments have the potential to re-invent their little block of town.

"I think it's gonna be really cool. It's gonna bring more foot traffic to Patten Parkway and to some of the other businesses as well as Cadence Coffee," said Molly Williams. "I feel like sometimes it's kinda off the grid a little bit, so having that right off Georgia Avenue will bring some foot traffic and have people talking about it."

People used to talk about the building. "Yesterday's Restaurant" occupied the bottom floor for almost 28 years. The sign remains. And most recently, it was home to the Midtown Music Hall. Now there's talks of adding a bar, restaurant or retail on the ground floor.

"I've had a lot of people be like 'Oh, I didn't even know you guys were here, I've never heard of Patten Parkway,' so it's a good chance to show people there are businesses here and a good chance to show off Patten Parkway as well. I think it'll be really good for the businesses on Patten Parkway. It gives us more of an opportunity to build a community with the people of Chattanooga," said Natasha Bradford.

River City President Kim White said they're looking at the bigger picture of turning Patten Parkway into a pedestrian-friendly area. If all goes according to plan, workers could begin construction on the building by 2015.

Click here to read more about the project.

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