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Old plant in Danville gets new owner

DANVILLE — A building that formerly housed one of Danville's manufacturing mainstays has sold to a local businessman.

Brian Jones, owner of Keystone Industrial in Junction City, bought the Palm Beach building on Stanford Avenue at auction from a Lexington-based ownership group for $80,000. Jones said he intends to make the property suitable for several types of operations.

"We want to bring her back to life," Jones said.

The 50,000-square-foot brick building is about 70 years old.

The Palm Beach Co. sewing factory, which made men's coats, opened in 1937 as Goodall Industries and closed in 1987. At the time of the closing it employed 400 people.

In 1989, Sammi Sound Technology Inc. bought the building to assemble loudspeakers. It was the first Korean manufacturer to come to Kentucky. Sammi Sound sold the operation in 1998.

The building was last used by Federal Signal, which closed at the end of 2008.

The facility has sustained serious damage over the last several years, including the theft of copper and wiring this year. A Boyle County couple were arrested in July for their part in stripping thousands of dollars worth of copper and wiring.

At the time, Boyle County Sheriff Marty Elliott, a former industrial electrician, called it the biggest copper theft he had ever seen and estimated that it would take "easily" $500,000 or more to replace the wiring.

Jones said the first order of business will be restoring the facility to its previous condition. He said that will begin soon, and he hopes to have the building ready for tenants as early as April 15.

Jones said he is exploring leasing options that include office space and warehouse space. He also has talked to someone about using part of the building for a photography studio.

"I have been approached by a number of people already," Jones said. "I think I will be able to populate it relatively quickly."

Jones has experience renovating aged buildings.

In 2007, he bought and renovated the old Jim Pyle building in Junction City now occupied by Keystone Industrial.

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