Historic distillery rickhouse falls to new development
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - After standing for 127 years, the old Nelson Distillery rickhouse is now a mountain of chipped bricks and broken wood.
Empty and decaying since the 70′s, the Irish Hill neighborhood fixture on the corner of Lexington Road and Payne Street is being replaced by a 21st century multi-story place to live, work and eat.
District 9 Metro Councilman Bill Hollander said the new development will immediately meet some modern day needs.
“It will mean more housing for the neighborhood and for the community which we so desperately need here and everywhere else in Louisville,” Hollander said. “There’s some retail involved. We don’t know exactly what that retail will be. But that’s an improvement I think.”
Documents filed with the city describe a “5-story, masonry clad building, with ground level storefronts with large expanses of glass.”
There will be “retail and restaurant space, 56 dwelling units, and...a rooftop common space.” There will also be a “tree lined sidewalk that is wider than the existing sidewalk. The second, third, and fourth levels are apartment spaces...”
The old rickhouse was once on the National Register of Historic Places but demolition was ordered at the end of August when the building was deemed unsafe and in danger of collapse.
“We’re all unhappy to have lost a historic building,” Hollander said. “There’s no question about that. But we’re moving forward now and I think it will be an improvement for the neighborhood.”
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