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There is little doubt that since opening in 2011, Track 29 has had a huge impact on the local music scene. In addition to bringing in acts like Jack White, Mutemath, Marilyn Manson and Corey Smith, the 1,700-seat venue proved that Chattanoogans could buy tickets in advance and that out-of-town fans would travel in fairly large numbers to see a show here.

It also proved that sold-out shows can happen regularly.

It was announced two years ago that the piece of land that is home to Track 29 on the Choo Choo campus was up for sale with the intent that it would be developed into high-end housing. A little over a month ago, papers were signed making that sale official.

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Barry Courter

In recent weeks, some folks have noticed that Track 29 has had fewer and fewer shows booked there. It currently has none. Some have concluded that it was closing. Co-owners Monica and Adam Kinsey say that is not the case.

Adam, who is also the Choo Choo's president, said he understands why people might think otherwise.

"It is definitely very easy to look at our calendar and put two and two together, but it is still our intention to move into the Centennial Theater space. We've been waiting on the sale of this land. It's hard to make an announcement without something to announce."

He said they've been working with architects on a design for the new space, and that no firm timetable has been set for when the new venue will open. Monica said in a text message two weeks ago that crews were busy putting the Track 29 equipment into storage.

She also said that everything is "business as usual" regarding its relationship with AC Entertainment, which has booked the touring acts into the venue, and its investors. Johnny Smith, president of Dead Bird LLC, which is an investor in the venue, said it is unclear to him at this point, what, if any role Dead Bird will have in the new place.

"The communications have not been made clear to me. I do know this: I hope Track 29 reopens. We need a place like that in Chattanooga."

That is 100 percent true. We are in the midst of what seems like a lot of really positive activity on the local music scene, with some really good shows coming to town and more great local performers than I've ever seen. But we still have plenty of needs to be met when it comes to venues and places for them to play.

Contact Barry Courter at bcourter@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6354.

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