New Owner Could Bring New Life To Watertown's Lincoln Building

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Long neglected, but too imposing to be forgotten, the Lincoln Building might be on the verge of a renaissance.

"It's iconic in downtown," said Brian Murray of Washington Street Properties, the building's owner.

"We'd like to restore it and bring it back to its former glory," he said.

As the doors opened for a tour by Watertown leaders, the goal was to build support for a rehab, a project the new owner says will cost millions of dollars. 

"We hope to create spaces that would appeal to entrepreneurs, startup businesses, artists," Murray said.

For the right amount of money, almost any building can be fixed, but how fixable is the Lincoln?

"Actually, I was delighted to see the good condition that the building is in," said Gary Beasley of Neighbors of Watertown.

Beasley was among those on the tour. He and his group have fixed a lot of downtown buildings.

In the Lincoln, he sees a solid structure with a lot of history.

"Your historic trim, your casings, the mailbox slots in the doors, I mean, all those wonderful things that you see that are part of the historic heritage, are all intact," he said.

The big question: where will the money come from?

"We're in the process of beginning conversations with all the local development agencies and government, as well," Murray said.

The first order of business is some long-overdue maintenance.

The real work could begin next year.

Monday, November 24, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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