LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The University of Louisville, through its foundation, will purchase the silos property adjacent to its campus along Interstate 65 for $3.3 million.

Approval came Tuesday from the U of L Foundation board of directors. The sale is expected to be completed by mid-January, but U of L has no immediate plans to develop the property. The 22 silos, which have become local landmarks, are expected to be demolished eventually. For years, the silos have been adorned with "University of Louisville" lettering or other university signage that overlooked the interstate.

The property has long been a part of U of L's master plan, though the university has passed on at least one opportunity to acquire it. Some ideas for academic and research uses have been floated, and it once was viewed by athletic director Tom Jurich as an ideal location for an on-campus arena, though U of L now has a new basketball home in the KFC Yum! Center downtown. Still, demolition could take considerable time, as the reinforced concrete silos likely will be costly to remove.
The Solae LLC property, which was home to the silos, closed in January. The plant produced industrial products from soy that are used in various industries, including paper, ink and adhesives. The plant first opened in 1919 and went through several changes in product lines and ownership over the years. The Solae business was owned by the DuPont Corp. at the time it closed.

Also Tuesday, the Foundation board The approved up to $2.8 million for the purchase of property at 204 E. Market St. in downtown Louisville. The property is owned by Dulworth Family Limited Partnership and is the former site of Dulworth Office Furniture Company. The foundation is negotiating to buy the property for a potential expansion of its subsidiary – Nucleus, which owns three buildings within a block of the Dulworth property.

The foundation board also nominated former U of L trustee and Jefferson County Judge-Executive Rebecca Jackson to a seat on the foundation board.

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