Genny's Diner to close due to historical property disputes

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by Anna Prendergast

WHAS11.com

Posted on September 27, 2010 at 11:42 PM

Updated Tuesday, Sep 28 at 10:46 AM

   LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) --   The owner of Genny's Diner on Frankfort Avenue says he is selling his business and the historic home next to it to one of Louisville's hottest new stores.  It brings an end to a fight that has involved jail time, mysterious fires and a neighborhood's effort to cling to history.  It's a deal that's been in the works for two months, but Genny's Diner  owner Frank Faris says on Monday he signed the contract to sell the diner and the Queen Anne historic home next door.
   If the sale goes through, Tim Koons-McGee will be putting the second location of the Comfy Cow, a locally owned, successful ice cream store, right where Genny's Diner has been selling the Sweet Daddy Burger.
   However, all of this has not been easy and it all stems around the 100-year-old Queen Anne house that Faris bought in 2001 for $100,000.  In 2003 Clifton became a preservation district protecting the house from being torn down, something Faris wanted to do.  He let the house go and didn't restore it, which made people in the neighborhood furious and even landed Faris in jail several times.
   Faris has been running his diner for 27 years, but says he is sick of the strict guidelines.  Faris says “With all the trouble, with the people going to jail, it dampened my appetite.”
   The possible new owner says part of the deal in the sale will be to fix up the house.  Metro Coucil Member Tina Ward-Pugh says the city has an incentive for the sale and is giving Koons-McGee money to help with the renovations that she wants to see on the Queen Anne home.
Faris would not give the exact sale price, but says it’s fair.  He says he is tired of the war between him and neighbors like Mike O'Leary. O'Leary has been one of the most vocal in wanting Faris to clean up what he calls an eyesore. O'Leary says “Shame on you, Faris, for doing that to our neighborhood.”
   Both men say they are happy to be parting ways.  Genny’s will be closing in two weeks.
 

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