West Market Street residents hope for stimulus money - WDRB 41 Louisville News

West Market Street residents hope for stimulus money

A Louisville metro council member is hoping for some economic stimulus money to improve the West Market Street corridor in the Shawnee neighborhood.

Taxpayer dollars already are funding some of the early efforts.

The problem is not *getting* people to come to West Market Street, but getting businesses to open up and stay, residents say.

Just take a drive from 24th Street to Cecil Avenue, just west of 41st Street.  You'll see what one Shawnee neighborhood business owner sees.

"The West End is starved for commercial and service industries. There's nothing down here." Bill Jones said.

Or, at least, far less than there used to be.  You'll find a small supermarket, a few auto shops, some doctors' and dentists' offices, and churches.

Residents want new retailers that offer jobs and convenience.

The $75,000 study is suggesting adding things like landscaping and benches to make West Market more visually appealing, so that businesses would actually want to locate here.

Council member Cheri Bryant Hamilton hosted a public meeting Wednesday night, to find out what people want.  Business and homeowners are concerned about one major hurdle.

"Where is the money going to come from? We're in a recession.  You know, how are resources going to be allocated to West Louisville, and is that going to be a top agenda item?" asked resident Joe Stennis.

Councilwoman Hamilton is hoping for economic stimulus money, after Mayor Abramson meets with President Obama on Friday.

After the West Market Street study wraps up and the public provides feedback again in May -- city leaders will figure out *how* much taxpayer money to spend on *what*... and *when* to get started on the improvements.

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