Norton Healthcare Sports And Learning Center In West End Secures A New Corporate Partner
A highly-anticipated project that has received community support but struggled with delays has reached a milestone by securing a corporate tenant.
On Wednesday, the Louisville Urban League (LUL) announced a partnership that will bring a Thorntons convenience store to the Norton Healthcare Sports & Learning Center in Louisville’s West End.
LUL president and CEO Sadiqa Reynolds said Thorntons' presence will boost the $50 million development.
“They are partnering with Louisville Urban League to bring this amenity to our community to help create jobs, to help train people for jobs, and to reinvest in the work that we do every single day,” Reynolds said.
The site will serve as a recruitment and training center, where people in the neighborhood can find a job through Thorntons. Some of the profits will be reinvested into the LUL.
Thorntons is paying for the construction of the store, which will operate on its own schedule separate from the center. Reynolds declined to give the dollar amount of the investment.
Thorntons CEO Simon Richards said racial justice movements in Louisville and around the country led him to want to do more for Black communities. The store and partnership with LUL, he said, is a good first step.
“We passionately believe in diversity, equity and inclusion,” Richards said. “I think this is a way of providing back some equity to the community. I think it comes in the form of reinvesting some money.”
Reynolds said the project is still mostly on schedule, but COVID-19 could push back the center’s opening date. The first outdoor event was initially supposed to happen in July, and there were hopes of opening the indoor facility this month.
Amina Elahi contributed to this story.