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Photos: Museum Plaza financing back on track

by Joe Arnold


Posted on June 24, 2010 at 3:49 PM

Updated Monday, Oct 21 at 9:35 AM

(Louisville, KY) - WHAS11 News has learned that a financing plan is moving forward that is expected to lead to construction resuming this fall on the Museum Plaza project in downtown Louisville.  Ky will apply for a $100 million loan from HUD that museum plaza developers will repay.

Construction is expected to resume by the end of the year. Click here to see the planned layout of Muesum Plaza.

To clarify an earlier story on WHAS11.com, sources tell WHAS11 News that the financing is not yet complete, but that people with knowledge of the financing are confident that the Department of Housing and Urban Development will approve a Section 108 loan as a sort of "gap financing" for Museum Plaza.

Saying developers are clearing a "big hurdle," sources say Museum Plaza developers have applied for the financing after Kentucky officials worked with developers.

As of February, the project included about 150 condominiums, a Westin Hotel, and an art museum and several businesses in the island at mid-structure.  WHAS11 News has learned that Museum Plaza developers plan to change the plans for one of Museum Plaza's towers, replacing a condominium tower with a second hotel.

The project has been delayed by the national credit crisis.  The 703 feet skyscraper would be the tallest building in Louisville.  It has an estimated $490 million price tag.

First announced in 2007,  the original timetable had Museum Plaza construction complete by this fall.  With a 30 month construction timeline, the earliest Museum Plaza would be complete is early 2013.

Though the city and state are chipping in up to $150 million for infrastructure improvements around the project, the rest had needed privately financing, an effort frozen by the national credit crisis.  But, sources tell WHAS11 News that a financing proposal using federal funds is now in the works that could lead to construction resuming before the end of this year.

Construction was brought to halt two years ago after neighbors in 19th century buildings complained about the vibrations from drilling for huge concrete pillars ten feet into solid bedrock.

You can check out the photos of the plan in the photo gallery or click here to see the planned layout for Museum Plaza.