Photo by Chris Cooper This building now owned by Deborah Hirsch once belonged to Jeff Fuller of Refunds Express Tax Service.

Photo by Chris Cooper

This building now owned by Deborah Hirsch once belonged to Jeff Fuller of Refunds Express Tax Service.

Another building on the square has been purchased by Deborah Hirsch according to Russellville Building and Zoning Administrator Bill Pearson.

That brings the total to 10 properties Mrs. Hirsch has acquired over the last several years in the downtown area. This includes her restaurant Ariella.

Jeff Fuller of Refunds Express Tax Service recently sold his building to Hirsch, which is next door to the former Crazy Ray's Pawn Shop, that Hirsch also bought. Refunds Express is moving to the white house south of Sonic on Main Street.

According to Pearson, who stays in contact with Hirsch's project manager Jim Adams out of Bowling Green, Hirsch has yet to name plans for this recent purchase. Hirsch has, however, made it known through Adams, she intends to take down the building that once housed Crazy Ray's where the Perry family once owned and operated a drug store.

Pearson has said he will not allow another "open grave" on the square and will only issue a demolition permit to take down the old Perry's building when Hirsch has all her ducks in a row to begin building immediately after.

"I won't let them demo that building until I have a permit in my hand to begin building," said Pearson.

Hirsch has big plans to build a luxury hotel on the square and Pearson says engineering work is currently being done where the Duncan building once stood on the corner of 4th and Main.

"This is a big project," said Pearson. "One that will take some time. This is going to be a brick and mortar building, not a pre-fabricated structure. This requires a lot of engineering. It will be a heavy building, one you don't just set up on concrete. They will have to dig and put pillars in and then set the foundation. It's going to take a little bit of time because it is a complicated building."

Hirsch recently filled in the hole left after taking down the old Southern Deposit Bank on the square and put a plywood fence around it. This area is to be used to store equipment during the construction of the hotel. According to Pearson, the city asked Hirsch to put up the barrier as well as another around the construction site.

"They are supposed to put another fence up like the other one before the Tobacco & Heritage Festival," said Pearson.