A group of leading downtown Louisville businessmen announced today that they will be donating a 10 story office building along Broadway to Louisville's Fund for the Arts. The Fund, which has been in negotiations with these business leaders for several months, will use the building to house several local arts groups, as well as create an incubator setting for emerging artists and groups in the city.
The project will eventually cost upwards of 7 million dollars and will rehab an underused building at 321 W Broadway, directly adjoining the W. L. Lyons Brown Theatre. The building will immediately become the home of Louisville's troubled orchestra and the Kentucky Opera. Other groups are expected to join them at later dates. By housing several arts group in a single location, many administrative functions will be shared, saving the groups several hundreds of thousands of dollars each year.
Also being added to this ambitious arts project is a residential component. The ninth and tenth floors are going to be rehabbed and sold as market rate housing. It will include 10 condominiums that range in price from 180,000 dollars to 300,000 dollars and will range from 1000 square feet to 1400 square feet. The projects will be known as the Lofts at Artspace. This is yet another example of how downtown is adding more and more "mixed-use" projects. What is exciting about this is how this project is being developed in a part of downtown that is not currently considered "hot" like the East Main corridor. It shows the slow expansion of the downtown resurgence.
In conjunction with this project, the Brown Theatre which is directly connected to the Artspace Building is also undergoing a huge renovation in which a new 3 story lobby, pedestrian walkways to the Brown Hotel, improved acoustics, and several other smaller additions are being completed.