Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Museum Plaza Updated

On Monday, January 22, the developers, architects, and collaborators of the skyline-altering Museum Plaza unveiled some new details about the 465 million dollar project.

Here is your "Cliff Notes" version of the project:

-62 stories on the block bounded by 7th on the east, 8th on the west, Main to the south, and River to the north.

- 703 feet tall, 1.5 million square feet of total space

-Underground parking with 800 spots

-246 room Westin Hotel with a ballroom, spa, restaurant

-Public "Art Hall" for constantly changing art exhibits, UofL Master of Fine Arts Program, Several Art Galleries

-99 Condos, 117 Studio-Lofts

-New public space at ground level with connection to Muhammad Ali Center, recreation of Fort Nelson Park, demolition of electric tower, picnic spaces, sports playing fields

-Official groundbreaking is now expected to happen in May or June

The most recent update did not provide a whole lot of new details, but did give a more clear vision of how the building will be integrated into the surrounding environment. The public plaza at ground level is being designed by the Dutch firm West 8. They will create a seamless connection to the Ali Center to the east and complete the first step needed to start a west downtown renaissance with the complete "redo" of Fort Nelson Park and it's connection to the community.

This project is incredibly exciting, and is perhaps the boldest project to be proposed in the South/Midwest (outside Chicago) in decades. It is one of the largest urban projects in the US in recent history and I cannot say how proud I am to have this built in Louisville.

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