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Legal battle drags on over First Lutheran bell tower

First lutheran church bell tower
Becca Costello
A judge has ordered a stay on the demolition permit for First Lutheran Church’s bell tower.

First Lutheran Church in Over-the-Rhine is trying to demolish its structurally unstable bell tower but in February, a judge ordered a stay on the demolition. The stay order was requested by OTR Adopt, a preservation organization that opposes tearing down the historic bell tower.

One engineering report commissioned by the church found that the work needed to stabilize the bell tower could cost an estimated $3 million.

Paul Muller, executive director with the Cincinnati Preservation Association, suggests the church should get an outside engineering consultation because there are conflicting engineering reports with different price tags.

The next hearing is scheduled for April 4.

Joining Cincinnati Edition to discuss the legal battle over the bell tower is WCPO Reporter Monique John; and First Luther Church Pastor Brian Ferguson.

Listen to Cincinnati Edition live at noon M-F. Audio for this segment will be uploaded after 4 p.m. ET.

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