Cedar Creek Lake

Because Life is Better at the Lake

GBC EDC closes purchase of Big Chief Lodging; building demolition to start immediately


David Webb is a veteran journalist who has written for the mainstream and alternative media for three decades. He is now a freelancer who lives in the Cedar Creek Lake area.

The Gun Barrel City Economic Development Corp. purchased Big Chief Lodging Feb. 3 with a $514,000 loan obtained through a local bank.

EDC officials said the city bought the property for almost half of the original asking price. The property was in foreclosure inititiated by another local bank, the First National Bank of Kemp.

The 10-year-loan by Southside Bank to the EDC will carry a 3 percent interest rate.

All structures on the property, including motel rooms, a restaurant, docks and marina office. will be immediately demolished.

The boat ramp will remain for free use, and picnic tables will be placed on the concrete foundations that remain after the demolitions. A private donor will fund the picnic tables and accompanying outdoor grills, officials said.

City officials may also consider building a large civic center at the site.

Previous attempts to sell the lakeside property through real estate listings and an auction had failed.

Residents who live near the site say they are concerned about possible detrimental factors such as noise and heavy traffic affecting their quality of life if a civic center is built.

Such a center would be used for conventions, concerts and other events. The property would be transferred to the city by the EDC for the development.

During the time the property sat unused police reported numerous complaints about vagrants in the area at night.

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