Wednesday evening, Louisville Magazine held a re-launch party at the Louisville Central Community Centers’s Old Walnut Street Development on West Muhammad Ali Boulevard, formerly Walnut Street. The high-turnout event was held in honor of a special reprint of “Stop Ignoring the West End,” a series of stories compiled by the publication focusing upon the nine neighborhoods – Algonquin, California, Chickasaw, Park DuValle, Park Hill, Parkland, Portland, Russell and Shawnee – that make up the oft-ignored section of the city that lies west of Ninth Street.
Many of the subjects featured in the series, which led-off the March 2013 “Top Lawyers” issue, made appearances at the event, along with civic leaders such as LCCC President and CEO Sam Watkins, Jr., who talked about the vision he had for the latest addition to the non-profit’s portfolio. In a brief speech he gave before the crowd, Watkins mentioned that the first floor of the in-progress facility will have commercial development on the first floor, bringing 15 entrepreneurs and 35 new jobs immediately on the first floor. The second floor will hold LCCC’s children’s development programs, while the third and fourth floors, comprising a total of 32,000 square feet, will be set aside for job creation and development, with the hope of bringing in more than 200 jobs.
Guests could enter from the rear parking lot or from West Muhammad Ali, where they were greeted by photographic murals of key events and images from Louisville’s history of the West End. They could also pick up a copy of the special reprint of all the stories from the March 2013 issue of Louisville Magazine, and partake of appetizers and cash bar from Jafri’s Catering, placed near street lamps resembling those that used to light Walnut Street in the early to mid-20th Century.
Photos: Cameron Miquelon/Louisville.com.