Public Art Gains Support for Revitalized Park Hill

by ekramer on March 3, 2009

The city’s long-term effort to revitalize West Louisville’s Park Hill corridor may include art. WFPL’s Elizabeth Kramer reports.

For years, abandoned industrial sites and vacant properties have featured prominently in the Park Hill neighborhood. It prompted the city to begin devising a masterplan last year to attract businesses.

Initial discussions about the area’s many abandoned industrial sites began more than three years ago led by U of L’s Center for Environmental Policy and Management. Then last year, the city began work on a masterplan for the area’s transportation corridor.

Green technology has factored into almost all of those discussions. And this week, the center led a meeting focused on public art. Lauren Heberle is the center’s associate director.

“Those two pieces bring attention to the corridor, bring interest to the corridor, make more investment come to the corridor, make people want to be in the corridor,” she says. “So, they really felt like those were the low-hanging fruit.”

Heberle says the residents and business owners talk often about the importance of these elements in creating a vibrant neighborhood.

“We have these brainstorming sessions. We’ll pick a topic that we want to talk about and no matter what topic we chose, they always came back to greening and public art,” she says.

A study commissioned by the city found the corridor could generate nearly 3,000 new jobs and more than $300 million in annual spending.

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