Louisville is a Possibility City!
Where can you eat breakfast in a locally run and renovated former movie theater, walk to a favorite gallery and talk to the owner, hop a trolley to enjoy lunch at a newly opened market and visit museum row for a science, history and Kentucky Craft fix, ending your day eating at a fine restaurant overlooking the river at sunset and strolling through a riverside park on your way to an internationally re-known contemporary art gallery, that calls itself a hotel? Now you have a sense that Louisville is not your everyday city, but is a city filled with possibilities at every corner. Louisville is a Possibility City.
HISTORY & MISSION
The Louisville Downtown Management District (LDMD), Kentucky's first, was established on August 27, 1991 to promote the economic, residential and cultural vitality of the core of downtown. Our mission is to promote, market and advance the economic development business and residential vitality of Downtown Louisville.
Such enhancement services include, but are not limited to, providing security, maintenance, ambassadorial and streetscape services and programs to properties and businesses within its boundaries, which are supplementary to those services and programs normally provided by local government. Additional activities include comprehensive research, marketing, informational and advocacy services.
We are vocal advocates for Downtown, working with property owners, government agencies and elected officials to secure needed support and resources for neighborhood improvement. The District has defined boundaries and is supported with assessments paid by district property owners.
A GROWING CITY
The next time you drive around downtown Louisville, take a good look around because chances are, it won't look the same just a couple of months later. Downtown development in the Derby City is booming with new announcements coming out every few weeks - the new downtown Louisville Arena, a new skyscraper, new and updated hotel rooms, museums, and several retail centers with shops and restaurants... just to name a few. Now, in keeping with one of the hottest nationwide trends, Louisville is adding a wide variety of exciting new housing opportunities and styles to its downtown developments.
With more than $2.1 billion in construction occurring in Louisville's downtown, the streetscape, level of amenities and quality of life is rapidly changing. The number of housing units has doubled in the last 20 years, with 900 units available in 1985 and more than 2,100 units available today. Those numbers are expected to double yet again within just the next three years, with 4,000 downtown housing units built, under construction or in development.
Perhaps one of the most exciting projects currently under development is the Louisville Downtown Arena. The Louisville Arena Authority unveiled its design of the downtown multi-purpose arena, highlighting a public plaza, transparent connections between the building and the pedestrian activity on the street, and a signature roofline echoing the river and the wing of a bird.
The $350 million project is slated to be open in 2010, in time for the UofL Basketball men's and women's teams to be playing their home games in their new home. For more information, visit www.arenaauthority.com.
Other major projects currently under development include: Whiskey Row, an $18 million, 100,000 square-foot project located adjacent to the new downtown arena that converts a relic warehouse district into a destination place for living, working and playing, will feature restaurants, entertainment venues, offices, 23 rental apartments and four condominiums; Louisville Medical Center, a projected $2.5 billion of capital investment in expansion, renovation and infrastructure projects of the former University of Louisville health sciences campus; Gallery Square Lofts, a $4 million, 21-unit condominium project; and Mercantile Gallery Lofts, a $10 million adaptive reuse project that will convert two historic buildings and add a new building, into 47 condominiums and retail space.
The West Main District in downtown Louisville features what is locally known as "Museum Row." In this area, the Frazier International History Museum, which opened in 2004, features a collection of arms, armor and related historical artifacts spanning 1,000 years, concentrating on U.S. and UK arms. Also nearby is the Louisville Science Center, which is Kentucky's largest hands-on science center and features interactive exhibits, IMAX films, educational programs and technology networks. The Muhammad Ali Center opened November 2005 in "Museum Row," and features Louisville native Muhammad Ali's boxing memorabilia. The Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft is a nonprofit organization on Museum Row dedicated to promoting and supporting art and craft excellence in Kentucky. Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory, one of the city's most popular attractions, is also housed with the corporate headquarters. The location is well-marked by the World's Biggest Baseball Bat that casually leans against the side of the building. Guests are invited to learn about the Official Bat of Major League Baseball – Louisville Slugger.
Louisville Slugger Field, home to the Louisville Bats, opened in 2000 with seats for over 13,000 fans.
The Kentucky Center features a variety of plays and concerts, and is also the home of the Louisville Ballet, Louisville Orchestra, Music Theatre Louisville, Stage One, and the Kentucky Opera, which is the twelfth oldest opera in the United States.
Downtown Louisville is home of many unique and diverse events that attract visitors from around the globe. The city is perhaps most well-known for the Kentucky Derby, held annually during the first Saturday of May. The Derby is preceded by a two-week long Kentucky Derby Festival, which starts with the annual Thunder Over Louisville, the largest annual fireworks display in the nation, that takes place over the Ohio River in front of downtown.
Usually beginning in late February or early March is the Humana Festival of New American Plays at Actors Theatre of Louisville, an internationally acclaimed new-play festival that lasts approximately six weeks.
Another art-related event that occurs every month is the First Friday Trolley Hop. A TARC trolley takes art lovers to many downtown area art galleries on the first Friday of every month.
On Memorial Day weekend, Louisville hosts the largest annual Beatles Festival in the world, Abbey Road on the River. The festival lasts five days and is located on the Belvedere in downtown Louisville.
We invite you to visit Louisville to sample all the Possibilities it has to offer. For more information about living, working or playing in downtown Louisville visit www.ldmd.org.