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No buyer yet for dome

BY CARRIE DILLARD cdillard@paducahsun.com

Still no bites from potential buyers for the Paducah Dome Pavilion.

According to Mark Thompson, parks services director, the dome and its related equipment are currently being stored and eventually will be sold by its manufacturer, Arizon Structures.

"Arizon offers various and sundry sizes," Thompson said. "The likely buyer will be someone who needs one in a hurry, and Arizon will look to what it has in stock for a quicker option. A lot of it will depend on rush and demand."

Thompson said the city did not have a specific price set on the dome.

"We'll wait until an offer comes through," he said. "We want to get as much as we can."

The city bought the 37,800 square-foot dome pavilion for $1.6 million in December 2009 because vendors at the yearly American Quilter's Society Quilt Week needed additional space after the Executive Inn closed.

The dome pavilion, commonly referred to as the bubble, has been set up adjacent to the Julian Carroll Convention Center each April for the quilt show, but under state regulations could not be inflated more than six months in a 12-month period because it was a temporary structure.

The Paducah City Commission classified the dome pavilion as surplus property in August 2013. For the quilt show this year, vendors once again used the dome pavilion at 600 N. Sixth St., the site of a new downtown hotel which is scheduled for completion by the second half of 2015. 

However, during the 2015 AQS QuiltWeek, the Hilton Garden Inn will be in its final stages of construction and the city will need to consider options to offset the loss of space from the dome area. Mayor Gayle Kaler said the most likely alternative is to use the newly renovated showroom at the Julian Carroll Convention Center, but she said the city has not ruled out using the dome in another location.

"We never rule anything out," she said, "but having everything in one place at the convention center would be a cleaner operation, if we can do that."

Contact Carrie Dillard, a Paducah Sun staff writer, at 270-575-8657.  

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