Phoenix Hill Tavern, Jim Porter's close permanently, effective immediately
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The good times are over at both Jim Porter's Good Time Emporium and Phoenix Hill Tavern.
Ben Rogers, the owner and founder of the popular night spots, announced this morning that both venues have closed permanently, effective today.
In a message posted on Phoenix Hill Tavern's website, Rogers said, "Please accept my VERY sincere apologies for the abrupt manner in which the clubs closed; and to anyone the closings will effect in a negative manner. (Especially staff members and entertainers.) [SIC]"
Rogers said his decision comes amid "some agreed to contractual terms, and concerns about safety and liability issues after a closing warning announcement." He added that "pulling the plug... while trying to control a cash only business [was] the safest way to do this."
Rogers said Phoenix Hill Tavern is under contract with an undisclosed real estate developer who he said is working closely with the city "to deliver a best of class development that will be very positive for the community." Rogers said the developer will reveal plans for the site at Baxter Avenue and Broadway in the near future.
In April, the Metropolitan Sewer District announced it had purchased the Jim Porter's Good Time Emporium property on Lexington Road near Grinstead Drive. A design manager for MSD said the agency needed to buy out Jim Porter's because of the large sewage catch basin it's building behind the nightclub as part of an agreement between MSD and the federal government. The design manager said there was not way to keep Jim Porter's open during construction of the catch basin, so MSD had to purchase.
Rogers previously said he would use the money he makes on the sale to open Jim Porter's at a different location. He did not specify a closing date for the Lexington Road venue. Today, Rogers wrote, "...the earlier than expected closing for Porters [SIC] was my own personal decision and not at MSD's insistence. I am sure MSD will move forward and do great things for the health and environment of our community."
Rogers said the contents of Jim Porter's Good Time Emporium will be sold soon in a series of online auctions at wardlowauc.com.
According to Roger's statement, Jim Porter's operated continuously for 25 years, and Phoenix Hill Tavern operated continuously for 40 years.
This story will be updated.
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