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City Purchases Land to Attract Jobs, Development in West Louisville

Mayor Greg Fischer announced Friday that Metro Government has purchased a 30-acre piece of land in west Louisville that it plans to market to companies wishing to expand or relocate to the city.The property is the former headquarters of National Tobacco located at 30th and Muhammad Ali Blvd. It will cost the city $1.2 million to buy from state government, with $750,000 coming from a settlement with the state over an unrelated right-of-way dispute.The other $500,000 was allocated by the mayor last year in the city budget to buy brown space in the West End."This property is ideal and ready for development," Fischer said in a news release. "The site is clear with no significant environmental issues. It’s on a rail line, abuts the interstate and is surrounded by a ready workforce."The mayor said that one of the chief obstacles to development in the West End since he took office has been its aging infrastructure and lack of land to build plants, factories or office space.Fischer's office along with Greater Louisville, Inc., say they plan to seek out companies that will relocate to the area. It is hoped that this will attract jobs, retail and new housing to the Russell neighborhood, including the surrounding California, Portland, Chickasaw and Shawnee areas."I am excited about this project and the impact it will have to this area. Bringing economic development and jobs to west Louisville is a top priority for all of us in Metro Government," says Councilwoman Cheri Bryant-Hamilton, D-5. "It is my hope that this project could be the jump start needed that will help us in the development of the West Market Street Corridor Project."The property will be marketed by Larry McFall, who oversees the Riverport development in southwest Louisville.