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Charlottesville Developer Gabe Silverman Dies at 72 - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Charlottesville Developer Gabe Silverman Dies at 72

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Gabe Silverman Gabe Silverman
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va (WVIR) -

People across Charlottesville are remembering the life of a man who was a true pillar in the community. Developer Gabe Silverman has died. His projects are known for revitalizing downtown and providing spaces where people can experience all that the city has to offer.

For many, Silverman's work is what made Charlottesville the kind of place where you would want to work, live, and play. But friends say beyond his resume, what was just as impressive was his love for people and this community.

"Gabe was just a remarkable visionary for Charlottesville. There's just no doubt,” said Rick Hazard, a friend.

It's with laughter and even a few tears that Linda Winecoff and Hazard remember Silverman - a man they called a friend for more than 20 years.

"It was that playfulness Gabe had about him and that just genuine, genuine focus on you when you were with him,” said Winecoff.

Hazard worked with Silverman as a project manager and chief estimator before starting his own business and says one of Gabe's greatest qualities is what motivated him.

"He wasn't concerned about the financial end of things. He was concerned about what was this business, what was this concept going to bring to the city,” said Hazard.

A prime example is the Michie Building. Bankers wanted Silverman to put lawyers and other businesses there.

"And Gabe used some very colorful descriptions of what he thought of the bankers. Gabe's known for that a little bit around town,” said Hazard.

Instead he had plans to make it an artist community.

"He wanted to bring a vibe to downtown that made it a cool place and gave it energy,” said Hazard.

“He didn't tear down and rebuild. He found the character in a building that would help that building come alive again,” said Winecoff.

Silverman's creative stamp can be seen throughout Charlottesville at the IX building, the Main Street Market, and dozens of restaurants.

"This is going to leave a tremendous hole in the city. He was a force of nature. Whether people liked him or didn't like him, you couldn't ignore him,” said Kristin Szakos, Charlottesville vice mayor and city councilor.

"And I just feel like the community lost a good friend. A really, really good friend,” said Winecoff.

Cvillenews.com reports that Silverman recently had an operation to repair a torn aortic artery. He is survived by his two daughters. His wife passed away in 2004. Silverman was 72 years old.

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