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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Bill Lamb, President and General Manager of WDRB and WMYO-TV in Louisville, Kentucky, announced that the official ground-breaking ceremony to mark the beginning of the stations' recently-announced building expansion will be held Wednesday, June 26. It will take place at approximately 8:45 AM directly behind the existing downtown facility, and will be televised live on WDRB in the Morning.
The expansion will add over 11,000 square feet to the existing building at the corner of Seventh Street and Muhammad Ali Boulevard, and is expected to be completed by January, 2014. The building originally opened in June, 1980.
Expected to be in attendance are Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear, Lieutenant Governor Jerry Abramson, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Metro Council President Jim King. Allan Block, Chairman of WDRB/WMYO owner Block Communications Inc. will also take part in the ceremony.
"This expansion has been made necessary by the incredible growth our stations have experienced in the past several years," said Lamb. "Since the so-called 'Great Recession' began in 2009, we've actually added 35 employees to our News and Sales staffs. This move will not only provide space for the added personnel, but will also greatly enhance our production capabilities by adding a second studio and control room."
Plans call for both levels of the building to be expanded west to the Seventh Street sidewalk and south into what is now landscaped space behind the existing structure.
"When this building opened almost 33 years ago, WDRB had fewer than 40 employees," said Lamb. "Now, we have 165 working in virtually the same space that existed then. This will give us the breathing room we've needed for a long time and provide our employees with what I believe will be the finest television facility in the market. And as an added bonus, it will allow us to remain part of Louisville's vibrant downtown scene instead of simply relocating.
"While almost all strategic decisions for WDRB and WMYO are made at the local level, which is a major advantage in and of itself," Lamb said, "a major project like this needed corporate approval. And we certainly got the necessary encouragement from our owners."
Block Communications. Inc. CEO Allan Block said, "We want to do everything we can to allow the impressive growth of WDRB and WMYO to continue. They are on a roll!"