4 groups competing to spend millions and build on vacant lot in west Louisville
A competition is underway for a chance to spend millions of dollars and build on vacant land at 28th Street and Muhammad Ali Boulevard in west Louisville.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A competition is underway for a chance to spend millions of dollars and build on vacant land at 28th Street and Muhammad Ali Boulevard in west Louisville.
The Heritage West lot has been vacant for years, but the people who live and work in the area hope change comes soon.
"Business has gone downhill," said Bill Jones, who owns Dad's Auto Sales on West Market Street.
Jones said his business took a hit several years ago when the factory at 28th Street and Muhammad Ali Boulevard closed.
"Well, they had 3,000 or 4,000 people that worked there," Jones said. "They ... drove cars, and they all needed their cars repaired."
Right now, the land is still vacant. However, four groups have submitted proposals to bring people, jobs and life to the property.
"We've been looking at this for about four years," said Louisville developer Clifford Turner. "It is the Global Research Biotechnology Park."
Last week, Turner pitched his idea for a $240 million multipurpose research park and lots of jobs.
"If the mayor sees fit, if he is interested in jobs, that's what our proposal creates," Turner said. "I didn't see not one other person that would compete against 200 jobs, permanent jobs."
The proposal was one of four that would replace failed plans for a foodport. The others include a community garden with a hemp facility, a grocery store and a state-of-the-art sports complex, which was proposed by the Louisville Urban League.
"We are very fortunate to have very good proposals for all four of the teams that submitted in response to our solicitation," said Theresa Zawacki, Senior Policy Adviser at Louisville Forward.
Zawacki said when a decision is made, nearby homeowners and businesses will benefit.
"Anytime you see new investment in any part of the community, you see a ripple affect," she said.
Turner said his proposal would also increase property value.
"Every house will be impacted in this area," he said. "We're going to make some improvements in their homes, [and] those vacant lots that are in there, we're going to build (affordable housing) on those."
Right now, a review committee is looking at all four proposals and will eventually make a recommendation to the city.
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