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This is great news! Just as I was updating my Distillery District article... this came about.

 

Council approves preparation of plan linked to Distillery District

Herald-Leader, October 2, 2008

 

The Urban County Council gave final approval on Thursday to prepare a development plan related to the Distillery District, a proposed $190 million arts and entertainment district on Manchester Street. The creation of the plan is a step to potentially establishing tax-increment financing for the project.

 

The council scheduled a 6 p.m. Oct. 21 public hearing to discuss the plan. The council also opted to move a hearing on a TIF plan related to the CentrePointe project to 7 p.m. Oct. 21. It had previously been scheduled for Oct. 14.

 

Both will be held at the Urban County Government Center, 200 East Main Street.

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The Lex

Shelburne Plaza, a mixed-use development first proposed in August 2005, was a mixed-use retail and residential project proposed by Guy J. Totino, Bloomington Group LLC and Polaris Real Estate Equities on the site of the Shelburne Tobacco Warehouse along South Broadway near Pine Street. The original plan failed to gain financial backing, and the project was released to Buckingham Companies, originally a minority equity partner, and the development re-originated as The Lex.

 

1 Shelbourne Plaza

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2 The Lex

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3 The following were taken at dusk yesterday.

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4

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5

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6

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1 Before...

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2 This block was home to Mia's, The Dame, Buster's and Club 141, along with Rite Aid.

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3 The Dame has moved next to Main+Rose; Mia's has relocated on North Limestone; Buster's is now on North Broadway; Rite Aid has closed although we are getting a new drug store at Victorian Square; Club 141 is gone.

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4 The ghost walls were part of the mammoth F.W. Woolworth Building.

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5

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6 May 6, 2008

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7 July 19, 2008

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8 August 24, 2008

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9 October 11, 2008

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I reported about The Mark stalling in my blog entry at UrbanUp. Now the bank has repossessed the development.

 

Bank takes possession of unfinished condos

By Jim Jordan, Herald-Leader, October 17, 2008

 

Central Bank & Trust Co. got court approval Friday to take possession of the unfinished The Mark Lofts on East High Street to protect the building from winter weather damage.

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I have a lot of friends that are envious of Lexington's dog parks. One of the more unique aspects of the city that many have yet to go after.

 

City officially opens Lexington's 4th dog park

By Michelle Ku, Herald-Leader, October 26, 2008

 

More than 70 dogs barked, ran and played off-leash with one another at the dedication of the Wellington Dog Park Sunday.

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Lexington's Centerpointe design modified, construction on schedule

Authored by Sherman Cahal on October 31, 2008

 

The Webb Cos. announced today that Centerpointe's design has been modified to include a revised top, a shorter base and other minor changes. The base was revised in response to criticisms that it was out of character and disproportionate in terms of height with other structures along Main Street, while the top was modified to give the structure additional height and a signature design -- pushing it to a level that ranks it as one of the tallest buildings in the state.

 

Work is also progressing on the core drillings, which have been extended 45 feet into solid rock, certainly good news to the developers who feared that there may have been an underground stream that would have required additional base supports for the underground parking structure. Construction could begin in December for the building itself, barring any major weather events.

 

Centerpointe is a $250 million, 823,000 sq. ft. 35-story high-rise tower under construction in downtown Lexington, Kentucky, bounded by Main, Vine, Limestone and Upper streets. Upon completion, it will include an upscale hotel, condominiums, office space, and retail and restaurant pads.

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445-feet was the old design height; the new design will be around 560-feet!

 

The Lexington Financial Center (the big blue building) is 410-feet...

The AEGON tower in Louisville is 538-feet...

The massive Humana building in Louisville is far shorter than this even...

The National City Tower in Louisville is 512-feet...

 

Lexington will be host to the state's largest tower -- sans Museum Plaza if that gets built.

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Lexington will be host to the state's largest tower -- sans Museum Plaza if that gets built.

 

Good...and let's hope that piece of trash MP never gets built.  For everyone's sake.

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The Centrepointe elevation looks like an updated version of one of those old Soviet bloc "Stalinist Skyscrapers"

 

Wait a minute...are you critiquing this design, while you defend Museum Plaza?  I don't get it.  This isn't the best design, but I would take something like this any day.  MP on the other hand, not so much.

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The Centrepointe elevation looks like an updated version of one of those old Soviet bloc "Stalinist Skyscrapers"

 

Exactly what I was thinking.  Kentuckians are really a bunch of commies.  Don't let their eight electoral votes to McCain fool you ;-)

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I think that building a quality urban fabric that is engaging and inviting should be a higher priority than seeing how big of a stunt one should pull so that they can get noticed.  MP did nothing at street-level and was imposing on the rest of the city.  While CentrePointe isn't great, it is better in that regard.  If I were an architect I might be more inclined to agree with you two.

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well there isnt really enough streetlevel or not streetlevel in those downtowns to worry about that too much. the wacky building will garner louisville much needed attention from outside the region and draw people from out of town. potentially. this building will bore everyone to death.  :laugh:  no, seriously its ok, i like it and yes it might be better at streetlevel, not sure, but overall its there just being servicable for its tenants.

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The area near Museum Plaza is known as "museum row" -- for its multiple museums within a district that contains more cast-iron facades than any other city outside of SoHo in New York City. It's transitioning into a pure mixed-use district, with the completion of the Glassworks Lofts, and the construction of new units in west downtown.

 

Street level may have been a bit... bland. But Museum Plaza would have resided next to a flood wall in a relatively undesireable area. Or was. The newer Ali Museum is next door, and is adjacent to a newly completed park and amphitheater. It is also near the Waterfront Park network. Three derelict buildings were demolished sans the facades, and a pedway through those facades would have led guests to the diagonal elevator. It was planned that the pedway would be lined with businesses.

 

As for Centrepointe, there is an abundance of street level activity.

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I like! I like! (Just want to see some renderings of the three-story base.)  :clap:

 

CentrePointe taller, more 'classic'

By Beverly Fortune, Herald-Leader, November 10, 2008

 

Changes to the CentrePointe project unveiled Monday give it a more "classic" look, according to developer Dudley Webb, as well as making it taller.

 

The Courthouse Area Design Review Board approved design changes to the exterior of CentrePointe that were presented by the developers of the $250 million, 35-story luxury hotel-condominium complex.

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Size of new Rupp a concern

Historic areas surround site

By Beverly Fortune, Herald-Leader, November 12, 2008

 

If a new basketball arena is built behind the Lexington Center, residents in the High Street area want it to be sensitive in design and scale to historic buildings that would surround it on three sides.

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406 feet? The new estimate should be around 560! :)

 

Centrepointe becomes more classical, taller

Authored by Sherman Cahal at UrbanUp on November 12, 2008

 

Centrepointe grew up. Literally. In what the Webb Companies has called the "final design," Centrepointe has added a distinctive peak and spire into the mix, replacing a flat roof. In addition, the podium has been reduced to three floors to accommodate taller heights for hotel functions, classical columns were added to the entrance along Main Street, and an elevated pedway that was to cross South Limestone Street to the Phoenix parking garage has been buried. The amount of condominiums has also been increased in the revision as well, taking into account the popularity of one-bedroom residences and demand that (will) hopefully return to the housing market by the time Centrepointe is completed in 2010.

 

The changes were filed with the Courthouse Area Design Review office and approved.

 

Core drilling for Centrepointe continues although it is winding down and should be completed within a few days. Foundation removal is still ongoing, and is slightly delayed due to the robust foundation of the former Graves structure.

 

In my opinion, the changes were wonderfully executed in the design. The addition of more traditional elements to the skyscraper, such as the columns, the spire and the revised motif has given Centrepointe a more refined feel. The reduction of the podium in terms of the number of floors, even if to give greater height to the hotel function rooms, should be more comparable to other downtown properties.

 

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"The city may soon have at its disposal a new form of leverage: raising revenues to pay for the repair of the city's storm water systems by imposing a new "impermeable surfaces fee" on properties with hard surfaces such as roofs and parking lots that contribute to excessive runoff."

 

Vexington Mall

A status report on Lexington's greatest infill challenge

By Tom Martin, Business Lexington, November 13, 2008

 

Vexing. The word just repeats over and over like a looped recording throughout the continuing saga of Lexington Mall, sole non-performer among the scores of highly successful retail properties owned by Saul Centers of Bethesda, Maryland.

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Distillery District, Centrepointe

 

Council puts CentrePointe, distillery TIF districts on docket

By Michelle Ku and Beverly Fortune, Herald-Leader, November 18, 2008

 

Urban County Council gave tentative approval on Tuesday to ordinances creating districts around two downtown developments so tax money from those districts can be used to help pay for city improvements.

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Less talk, more action downtown, Lexington city council is told

By Beverly Fortune, Herald-Leader, November 25, 2008

 

A vibrant downtown with a wide array of cultural activities, festivals, bars and restaurants is no longer simply a social amenity, but an important economic development issue for Lexington, the Urban County Council was told on Tuesday.

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The news that we have been waiting for! Not only is this great for Centrepointe and its associated revitalization plans, but great for the Distillery District!

 

In addition, Cheapside has been permanently closed to all vehicular traffic!! It seems that the trial closure phase worked. Is the redesign of Cheapside included in the TIF?

 

Council approves CentrePointe, Distillery tax financing districts

By Beverly Fortune, Herald-Leader, December 4, 2008

 

The Urban County Council gave final approval to plans to help revitalize two areas of downtown, one around the old Fayette County courthouse and the CentrePointe development, the other along a stretch of Manchester Street.

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Centrepointe, Distillery District gets OK from Lexington, Kentucky for Tax Increment Financing

Authored by Sherman Cahal at Urban Up on December 5, 2008

 

On December 4, the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Council gave final approval for plans to use tax increment financing for an area around Centrepointe, and for the Distillery District along Manchester Street in Lexington, Kentucky.

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UK Announces 'Digital Village' Construction Project

Media Contact: Dan Adkins, University of Kentucky, December 8, 2008

 

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Dec. 8, 2008) – The University of Kentucky will build an $18.6 million building to house high-technology research on visualization, computer science and electrical and computer engineering as part of a “Digital Village” complex in the Maxwell Street-Rose Street vicinity.

 

UK President Lee T. Todd Jr. announced the project, which will be funded through $9.3 million from private donors, with the remainder coming from the state’s Research Challenge Trust Fund.

 

“When we released our Top 20 Business Plan, we made clear that we would fund 40 percent of the plan ourselves,” said UK President Lee T. Todd Jr. “Today, we are pleased to show the Commonwealth that we are intent on keeping that promise. Thanks to generous private support from three great friends of the University, UK is proud to announce its first building to be constructed solely from private donations and the Bucks for Brains matching program.

 

“It is quite appropriate that such innovative financing will be used to build the second phase of the College of Engineering’s Digital Village. The Digital Village will be UK’s high-tech hub, a center of innovation, creativity and discovery that will be crucial to helping Kentucky create a thriving, knowledge-based economy,” Todd added.

 

The Marksbury Family Foundation, created recently by Davis and Beverly Marksbury, is contributing $6 million for the project, which will be named the Davis Marksbury Building, pending approval by UK's Board of Trustees.

 

The Davis Marksbury Building, Phase 2 of UK’s Digital Village, will provide nearly 25,000 square feet of space for research activity conducted by faculty in the UK Center for Visualization and Virtual Environments, the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the Department of Computer Science, all of which are part of the UK College of Engineering.

 

The funding will cover the costs of design, construction, furnishing and landscaping the Davis Marksbury Building.  The cost of maintenance and operation will be absorbed by UK.

 

Thomas W. Lester, dean of the UK College of Engineering, said, “The vision and generosity of Davis and Beverly Marksbury help position the University of Kentucky and the College of Engineering at the forefront of research facilities and opportunities necessary to attract and retain Top 20 caliber faculty and students in STEM disciplines.”

 

As envisioned by Todd, the UK Digital Village will be comprised of four buildings dedicated to high-tech research when it is complete.  No funding is available as yet for Phases 3 and 4 of the complex.

 

Todd’s vision calls for the UK Digital Village to be an integral part of UK’s town-gown corridor intended to break down any perceived barriers separating the campus from the city.

 

Groundbreaking will be held during September 2009, and the project is expected to be complete in January 2011.

 

In other support, $2 million is being given by James F. Hardymon, a longtime UK supporter, a member of the UK Board of Trustees and the primary donor in support of the Hardymon Building, which was Phase 1 of the UK Digital Village. The Hardymon Building houses research in advanced computer and communications networking and other high-tech research.

 

James McDonald, president and CEO of Scientific Atlanta, is giving $328,000 to support the project.  Another $1 million is being sought from a private donor.

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Walmart donates solar recycling bins to city parks

Herald-Leader, December 9, 2008

 

Wally, also known as BigBelly Solar, is coming to three Lexington baseball complexes.

 

Three solar-powered recycling bins will be placed at Cardinal Run Park, Shillito Park and Veteran's Park, city and Walmart officials announced Tuesday. The bins use solar power to compact plastic bottles, aluminum cans, paper and cardboard, to be picked up by the city's recycling program.

 

Also coming as part of the retail chain's $40,000 donation: 16 conventional recycling containers, also at those three parks.

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