Whiskey Row almost stabilized - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Whiskey Row almost stabilized

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LOUISVILLE, KY (WDRB) -- Stabilization work is almost done on Main Street's Whiskey Row, that block along the north side of Main Street just east of the KFC Yum! Center.

However there is a lot more work to be done.

The stabilization work is just the first phase of the redevelopment of most of the block.

A lot has changed since June of this year when the stabilization work began. Some of the buildings were in danger of collapsing.

"We are tearing down the pieces we did not think we could save, and we are stabilizing what is now here and maintain it until the next development plan is presented," Ron Carmicle, the project manager told WDRB News on Wednesday.

Carmicle took WDRB on a tour of the work site Wednesday morning to show us what has been accomplished since June.

Preservationists had pushed to save all seven facades of the buildings along the block that were empty; and the project has saved all seven.

Carmicle says there have been no major surprises during the stabilization work but says it was a tougher job than he expected because of the condition of the long neglected buildings.

They were constructed in the late 1800's and some had been abandoned for decades so there was severe water damage to the structures.

But six months of intense labor has saved as much as possible.

The cost of doing that is about $5 million.

"I am real proud of the fact that these owners and investors are committed to saving what I think is the fabric of our history," Carmicle said.

When the stabilization work is finished about mid-January Washington Street will be reopened and the sidewalks around the project will be usable again.

Then it should be on to phase two of the project the renovation of the buildings.

WDRB has been told that the owners are in negotiations with several tenants that will bring a tourist and entertainment venue to the area with bourbon as a theme at one of the attractions.

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