Yale Students Arrive in Louisville to Design Urban Distillery

by Gabe Bullard on January 30, 2012

A group of Yale architecture students is in Louisville this week to plan and design an urban distillery.

The visit is part of Yale’s advanced design studios program, in which classes visit various locations around the world and plan relevant architecture. Another class this year will visit Europe and design an opera house. The Louisville team is led by Deborah Berke, who was a chief architect for 21C museum and hotel.

The team will study distilleries and the Whiskey Row buildings downtown. They will then design a distillery area across the street from Whiskey Row. The design is a project and isn’t meant to be built. But it’s also not meant to simply be a distillery either.

“The idea that a city could latch on to something that’s already associated with it and take that forward into the future I think is what every American city needs to be considering,” says Berke, adding that there are three factors driving the project. “One is of course renewed interest in jobs. The second is the re-strengthening American cities. The third is this growing and fabulous interest in local and artisanal foods and other manufactured goods.”

The team will leave the city on Thursday. Their design will be complete in late April.

Berke says the designs will follow all existing rules and building codes and could inspire other local projects.

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