In this week’s edition of LEO, we focus on the ongoing fight over the potential demolition of the historic Iron Quarter. The revelation that developer Todd Blue asked the city for permission to destroy the cast-iron buildings has ignited a fierce fight over the 19th Century structures.
Besides becoming downtown eyesores, it also appears that the deteriorating buildings are affecting nearby business along the Main Street corridor.
Tom O’Shea is the owner of several bars and restaurants in Louisville, including the new Patrick O’Shea’s on Main Street. He says barriers have recently gone up near his property to keep people away from the area known as Iron Quarter – in the 100 block of West Main. The developer there, Todd Blue, is seeking to demolish the buildings, but preservationists are trying to block the effort.
As we pointed out previously, May is National Preservation Month and coupled with the new downtown arena opening later this year, the eyes of city officials, developers and preservationists are focused on East Main Street buildings and what will happen next.