Small business owners looking to attract more new companies to V - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Small business owners looking to attract more new companies to Valley Station

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A Louisville couple invests their life's savings in fried chicken and cornbread. It's part of the effort to bring new life into a once neglected part of town.

Whether it's big business or a small, locally owned company, more stores and restaurants seem to be springing up in Valley Station these days.

Mapco, a convenience store and fuel station company based in Tennessee, is the latest of several new businesses that have opened in Valley Station during the past several years.

"I've noticed that a lot of buildings that had been vacant for a long time have been torn down and a lot of new businesses have been coming in and it's really nice to see that happen in this end of town," says Valley Station resident Joshua Yates.

Just up the road, along Dixie Highway a locally owned diner has opened again.

Tom Whitted and his wife put what he describes as their life savings to reopen Jessie's Diner, a popular restaurant for many years until it closed two years ago.

"After talking to many, many people, there are just so many fond memories of Jessie's it just seemed right," says Whitted, "everybody talks about having to drive to the east end or to Bardstown Road to go to a nice place, we wanted to do a nice place and have it be part of the valley.

His restaurant serves up what he describes as country comfort food in an unusual setting.

"I call it nostalgic new," says Whitted, "it has got that feeling of an old time diner, yet it's kind of updated and new looking."

The Louisville Independent Business Association (LIBA) is working to get more locally owned businesses to locate in the southwest part of town.

"We are undertaking an education campaign for other independent businesses that are in other areas of town to take a look at the South End," says LIBA Director, Jennifer Rubenstein, "there are a lot of independent businesses that are already there which is great but we really want to add to that critical mass and give people a lot of options for their buying dollar."

LIBA is planning a bus tour later this summer for business owners to check out the possibilities of locating in Southwest Jefferson County.

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