The doors of some two dozen empty properties will be open Saturday from 10 a.m. till 4 p.m. to showcase business opportunities in downtown Paducah and Lower Town.
Paducah Main Street is coordinating with the Paducah Board of Realtors, independent realtors and local business and property owners to host the first-ever Showcase Paducah.
It will provide the opportunity to tour commercial and residential properties that are for sale or lease. Anyone can tour the properties and ask the real estate agent or property representative questions.
"Many people have dreamed of opening their own business, expanding to a new location or owning property in Paducah's historic district," said Melinda Winchester, Paducah Main Street director.
"Showcase Paducah allows those interested in downtown or Lower Town the opportunity to see several properties at their leisure."
Winchester will be set up next to the gazebo at Second and Broadway streets to provide maps and answer questions about financial incentives and tax credits.
According to a recent count by The Sun staff, the downtown historic district has 42 vacant buildings compared to 166 open businesses. The district runs east and west from Monroe to Clark streets, and north and south from North 8th to South Water Street.
The available properties will be on display on Broadway, Jefferson, Harahan Boulevard, Madison, North 6th Street, North 9th Street and Maiden Alley.
"We are looking to revitalize downtown Paducah," said Randy Bridges, president of the Paducah Board of Realtors.
Bridges said the buildings will range from some ready to occupy to others that will need a complete renovation.
"I think that in the past people have not understood the cost to renovate these buildings," Bridges said. "I want people to understand the time and money it takes to bring them up to the stage they are in."
Winchester said the city hopes to interest a mix of people to buy, rent or lease in downtown, especially family-oriented businesses. She also hopes to find investors to build affordable apartments as well as service amenities such as a gym.
"The historic architecture and creative atmosphere make downtown and Lower Town enjoyable locations not only to visit but also to build a future," Winchester said.
Staff writer Katie Paxton contributed to this article.
Contact Becca Schimmel, a Paducah Sun staff writer at 270-575-8652.