Columbus turning mall into recreational complex

COLUMBUS, Ind. — A southern Indiana city council is spending more than $4 million for a shopping mall that it plans to convert into a community recreational and sports tourism complex.

The Columbus City Council last week voted to approve the funding for the purchase of the Fair Oaks Mall in a transaction scheduled to close Dec. 14.

The Republic reports the city is partnering with Columbus Regional Hospital and the Heritage Fund/The Community Foundation of Bartholomew County on the purchase. The hospital will contribute nearly $1.4 million and the Heritage Fund will provide $450,000.

Mayor Jim Lienhoop said the city needs to hire a consultant to develop an overall master plan for the mall.

City Councilman Tom Dell says the redeveloped mall could help attract people to live in the community.

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