Spirits maker buys historic Johnson City depot

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (AP) -- The call will go from "all aboard" to "bottoms up" at Johnson City's historic Carolina, Clinchfield and Ohio Railway terminal.

The Johnson City Press reported the city Development Authority voted Thursday to sell the building to Sevierville entrepreneur Joe Baker, who plans to open a brewery and restaurant there.

The purchase price was $5,000. The development authority bought the circa 1930 terminal in 2010 for $150,000 with the hope of turning it into a tax-revenue producing downtown business.

Baker, who owns the successful Ole Smoky Distillery in Gatlinburg, said he hopes the brewery will be a catalyst for other downtown development in Johnson City. He expects tax revenue to more than justify the city's investment in the terminal.

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