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Murray City

Murray City Hall is located at 104 North 5th Street, Murray, KY 42071; phone: 270-762-0350.

Beginnings [1]

The City of Murray was made the county seat of Calloway County in 1844. It was named for John L. Murray, a Kentuckian who served in the U.S. Congress.

Murray experienced early development in the vicinity of the present Calloway County Courthouse. This development was supported by the Courthouse activities, and local streets in the vicinity were laid out in a typical grid pattern around the Court Square. Growth has tended to occur in a westerly and southwesterly direction from the initial location of the settlement, avoiding the flood hazard in the lower elevations along Clarks River east and south of the city.

Murray Normal School was established in 1922 in the northwest quadrant of the city, growing from an initial enrollment of 202 students to almost 10,000 for the Fall 2002 semester. The evolution of Murray Normal School to Murray State University has had a significant impact on overall development patterns in the city. The effect of the university's expansion and subsequent surrounding growth has been the acceleration of development in a westerly and northwesterly direction, increasing the distance between the original downtown center and the current distribution of population.

Another significant historical development influence has been the location of industrial and related commercial uses north and south along the railroad between the downtown area and the river. Low density residential uses have developed more recently in the southwestern portion of the city. The commercial focus of the city shifted from downtown and South 12th Street as new, highway-oriented retailers and restaurants located along North 12th Street near the university.

  1. City of Murray, Kentucky, Comprehensive Plan, Future Land Use Plan Element, 2003,, accessed May, 2012.
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