Paducah Coca-Cola bottling plant receives statewide historic preservation award

Paducah Coca-Cola bottling plant receives statewide historic preservation award

PADUCAH, KY (KFVS) - Representatives and business owners from Paducah, Kentucky received the Ida Lee Willis Memorial Foundation Historic Preservation Award for the Paducah Coca-Cola Bottling Plant.

The Coke plant received a Preservation Project Award which recognizes outstanding examples of rehabilitation or preservation of historic buildings or other similar projects that have a significant impact on Kentucky's built environment, historic or prehistoric places.

Melinda Winchester, downtown development specialist and Paducah Main Street director prepared the application for nominating the Coke Plant that was submitted to the Kentucky Heritage Council.

"The Coca-Cola Plant has been a long-standing anchor for the Mid-Town Neighborhood," Winchester said. "However, it sat vacant for several years after shutting its doors in 2003. Owners Ed and Meagan Musselman along with their rehabilitation team had a vision for the building when they purchased it in 2012. The renovation of the Art Deco building with the addition of eight businesses and local artwork in its beautiful space has breathed new life into one of Paducah's most iconic structures and into the neighborhood."

“The Coke Plant is a wonderful part of Paducah's history that resides in lasting memories of so many. The quality of craftsmanship and construction can be seen throughout the building in its beautiful terrazzo floors, premium woodwork, and numerous unique accent pieces. We knew that with the right community-focused rehabilitation, the building could again become a focal attraction for Paducah and its surrounding areas. We have been humbled by the outpouring of support and appreciation to help drive the project to that reality," Edward Musselman said.

The plant was constructed in 1939 and was a major distribution center for about 50 years.

Today, many different companies inhabit the building such as Dry Ground Brewing Company, Pipers Coffee and Tea, Ice Cream Factory, Ochre, True North Yoga Studio, Time on the String, Socially Present and Mellow Mushroom.

The Ida Lee Willis Memorial Foundation Historic Preservation Awards are presented each May during National Historic Preservation Month and recognize excellence in the preservation of historic buildings and cultural resources through investment, advocacy, volunteerism, building partnerships, public involvement, lifelong commitment, or significant achievement.

Ida Lee Willis was the first executive director of the Kentucky Heritage Commission (now Heritage Council) and widow of former Gov. Simeon Willis at the time of her appointment in 1966.

For more information, you can click here to visit the Kentucky Heritage Council.

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