Highlands Mellow Mushroom under construction on Bardstown Road in December 2014. (Branden Klayko / Broken Sidewalk)
Highlands Mellow Mushroom under construction on Bardstown Road in December 2014. (Branden Klayko / Broken Sidewalk)
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What's This?

Mellow Mushroom is hard at work building its third Louisville pizza outlet, this time at 1023 Bardstown Road in the Highlands, next door to a building that grew a second story a few years ago.

Developer Andy Blieden, who previously created the Butchertown Market and redeveloped the building that once housed The Blind Pig and Meat, is behind the project. The site formerly housed Miracle Cleaners in a house-turned-commercial building (see photo below) that had been vacant since 2002. That boarded-up-building was set back from the street and included a wide curb cut and parking lot.

Rendering of the Bardstown Road Mellow Mushroom. (Courtesy Pate Design Group)
Rendering of the Bardstown Road Mellow Mushroom. (Courtesy Pate Design Group)

The new $1.2 million Mellow Mushroom building contains nearly 6,000 square feet on two floors with a 1,100 square foot patio raised above an access road to a 15-car parking lot behind the building, according to a Business First report. Roll-up garage doors open the facade up to the street. The project was designed by Duluth, Georgia–based Pate Design Group, which has designed a number of other Mellow Mushrooms across the South, including the St. Matthews Mellow Mushroom.

The building was approved by the Bardstown Road Overlay District in April 2014, according to the Courier-Journal, and officials loved the design. “It really was an engine firing on all cylinders,” Metro Louisville Urban Design Administrator Bob Keesaer told the newspaper. “This is the type of strong architectural statement we’d like to see replicated on the Bardstown Road corridor.” While we’d prefer to have eliminated the curb cuts entirely, the building’s design does appear to minimize its impact.

New bike racks for the Highlands Mellow Mushroom. (Courtesy Core Design)
New bike racks for the Highlands Mellow Mushroom. (Courtesy Core Design)

The C-J reported that Blieden previously tried to purchase the environmentally contaminated Miracle Cleaners property in 2009, but was not successful until the state passed a Brownfield Redevelopment Program in 2013, “which provides liability assurances to those looking to redevelop properties in extreme states of disrepair and possible contamination.”

Among the site’s quirky features are a series of three artsy bike racks shaped like enormous bicycle chains designed and fabricated by Louisville’s Core Design, who recently built the shipping-container bars at ReSurfaced on Main Street. According to Core’s Facebook page, the racks are made of Cor-ten and stainless steel.

Work is progressing quickly at the site, but no official opening date has yet been announced. You can check out the Highlands Mellow Mushroom web site or Facebook page for more information on the official opening date.

Highlands Mellow Mushroom under construction on Bardstown Road in December 2014. (Branden Klayko / Broken Sidewalk)
Highlands Mellow Mushroom under construction on Bardstown Road in December 2014. (Branden Klayko / Broken Sidewalk)
The long-vacant Miracle Cleaners property was demolished. (Courtesy Google)
The long-vacant Miracle Cleaners property was demolished. (Courtesy Google)
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Branden Klayko

Branden Klayko

Founder and Editor at Broken Sidewalk
Branden founded Broken Sidewalk in 2008 while practicing architecture in Louisville. He continued the site for seven years while living in New York City, returning to Louisville in 2016. Branden is a graduate of the College of Architecture at Washington University in St. Louis, and has covered architecture, design, and urbanism for The Architect's Newspaper, Designers & Books, Inhabitat, and the American Institute of Architects.
Branden Klayko

2 COMMENTS

  1. I like the new Mellow Mushroom building. I also like that green building next to it on the south side. I am amazed that they slipped under the any new Louisville real estate development protest radar. Was there not any? Seems like anything new gets fought against tooth and nail.

  2. this was in line with the culture, character and architecture of the neighborhood, why would this get protested? the projects that are protested are usually detrimental to at least some aspect of the neighborhood.

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