Riverfront hotel could be finished by next AQS QuiltWeek

Wednesday kicks off  AQS QuiltWeek in downtown Paducah. The event attracts 40,000 people to the riverfront. If you’re one of those quilt enthusiasts, you may have had trouble finding a place to stay near the city.

Construction of a new Holiday Inn riverfront hotel means you and your family could someday stay right next door to the convention center. Lingate Hospitality hopes to be finished by the next quilt show, but they’re not promising that just yet. There have been a few curve balls in construction, but crews still say it’s possible.

Kathy Picklesimer and Cathy Burns share the same first name and a love for quilting. They knew last year that they’d be making the drive from Ohio again this year. They told me that drove 400 miles, but it is well worth it. They’re staying 40 miles away in Eddyville, Kentucky.

They hope to stay a little closer next year. Construction crews hope the same thing, but it will depend on sunny weather. Due to some wild cards in the plans, Lingate’s construction and maintenance manager, Chris McCarthy, says they’re about eight days behind schedule. “This thing is sitting on probably one of the biggest seismic zones in the region,” he said. That means major construction to make the area earthquake resistant.

Crews also had to tear down a concrete pad and excavate remains of an old hospital. “It set us back a whole lot of dollars and several days. In fact, just last week we were still finding some bits and pieces as we were doing some sewer and underground utilities,” McCarthy said.

The hotel will add 30 full-time employees and the Another Broken Egg restaurant planned to be inside the hotel will employ between 25 and 30 people.

Picklesimer and Burns are excited for next year’s show. They say being closer to Paducah means more shopping and meeting more quilting friends.

Another obstacle that Lingate has had is Paducah’s 14-foot floodwall. Their hotel in Owensboro has a view of the Ohio River, but in Paducah you see a wall. McCarthy says they’re going to get creative with possible murals and water features to still make it a cool place to stay.

Paducah QuiltWeek Executive Show Director Bonnie Browning says she wants the new hotel space for the numerous show sponsors. She also says lack of hotel space is part of the reason they announced a second quilt how in fall of 2017. 

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