More Condos for East Market

(Map of the proposed condo site, from the C-J.)

This morning brings some positive development news amid the gloom of the pre-winter recession, as local developers are proposing a new condominium building on East Market Street (from the Courier-Journal):

A rezoning request to develop 16 condominiums and ground-level retail space in a four-story historic building at 415 E. Market St. will get a hearing this week.

Mincat LLC, headed by investor John Gray, expects to spend about $2 million to renovate the brick and limestone structure that dates to 1845 and was the original home of J. Bacon & Sons Dry Goods. It was the Bacon’s store through the early 1900s.

More recently the building, which Mincat bought in 2006, housed Debrovy’s, a manufacturer of tarps, awnings and other canvas products that recently moved to a site on South Seventh Street.

The Metro Louisville Planning Commission has scheduled a public hearing for 1 p.m. Thursday on Mincat’s request for a change from industrial to commercial zoning on the .38-acre tract on the north side of Market between Preston and Jackson streets…

Despite the depressed economy, Gray said he believes the market for the condos is strong. He noted that the site is a block from Louisville Slugger Field and near Waterfront Park in an area where housing and other new development have been hopping.

He said the primary market for the units will be young professionals. The units, most of which will be lofts, will sell for $225,000 to about $400,000 for several penthouses.

The site, Gray said, “is easy to get in and out and is near the interstate.”

The plans call for 11 parking spaces in an existing basement and nine surface parking spaces next to the building.

Gray said David, Benjamin and Larry Levine, members of the family that long operated the Fashion Shops of Kentucky chain of clothing stores, are partners with him in the condo venture.

The developers plan at least two retail tenants on the ground floor, or a total of about 3,000 square feet of commercial space, Gray said.

Documents filed with the commission indicate that the developers intend to restore the building’s façade and do not intend to apply for historic tax-credit financing, even though the building is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Gray said work would start soon after zoning is approved and that it would take about a year to complete the project.

It sounds like an interesting project, in a building with historic significance, but given the slowed pace of development downtown in the past few months, we can’t help but be somewhat skeptical, while still hoping for the best.

UPDATE: Broken Sidewalk had a story about this development back in October, complete with photos. Check it out here: http://brokensidewalk.com/2008/10/06/development-watch-bacon-debrovy-lofts-coming-soon/.

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One Response to “More Condos for East Market”

  1. Its true that despite the depressed economy the market for the condos is still strong. People want condos instead of house and lot.

    -Ella

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