LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – After months of community meetings discussing the site for the proposed West Louisville FoodPort, organizers held an event to celebrate the season as well share more information about the project Saturday.
An area that normally sees little to no foot traffic transformed into a haven of possibility with vendors, arts and crafts along with sweet treats filling the fall air.
The inaugural Harvest Festival was held to promote a new initiative called Rsquared, which encourages the reuse and revitalization of abandoned properties and lots throughout the city.
Produce Park, which will sit adjacent to the FoodPort, is the first project from Rsquared. It's expected to include orchard trees and hardscape.
The group, along with Louisville Grows, are currently researching ways to get the community involved to come up with productive ways to utilize underused properties. They plan to start with a small area of the Russell neighborhood and portions of Portland.
"We're also showing people that they have to access vacant lots. We make these lots available for sale or lease for businesses to residents to community groups. So we're partnering with Louisville Grows to show people that they can lease property, they can conceive a project and we will be there every part of the way to help them implement that project," Jeana Dunlap, the event's organizer said.
Officials with the Harvest Festival were very surprised at the turnout and say having the event annually will be part of what's to come when the FoodPort is up and running.
The Workforce Development Workgroup was also on hand to give out information about jobs through their Internet Jobs Café after the city unveiled their free Wi-Fi for the neighborhood.