Developers behind the Whiskey Row Lofts officially announced today that they have secured financing for the $18.5 million mixed use project at Second and Main Streets and will begin construction immediately. The 110,000 square feet will occupy a prominent corner in the old L&N Building at 101 W. Main and adjacent Burwinkle Hendershot whiskey warehouse at 127 W. Main.
The project was originally announced in September 2008 as a mix of 27 residential units, retail, and office space, but the latest update shows 39 planned units. Whiskey Row will offer a mix of apartments, live-work lofts, and penthouse suites. Features include an interior courtyard, terraces & balconies, internal parking, and restoration of the buildings’ historic features (check out a pre-construction photo tour).
Four to five restaurants will be part of the project including the already announced Sol Aztecas and a gastropub saloon officially called Hog n’ Char Whiskey Saloon. Bearno’s by the Bridge will remain where it is. Sol Aztecas will occupy 3,700 square feet in the west bar of the B-H building adjacent to Bearno’s and will be operated by owner Saul Garcia.
While prematurely announced by the city earlier this year, a lease has now officially been signed for Hog n’ Char for 5,900 square feet, also in the B-H building. Brothers Michael and Steven Ton of Basa restaurant fame and Master Sommelier Brett Davis will serve “world class barbecue and Southern comfort food” at the new restaurant. In a gesture towards the building’s past, Hog n’ Char Whiskey Saloon will have an emphasis on whiskey cocktails.
Some interior demolition work has already begun, but today’s announcement marks the beginning of real construction. The first new restaurant is expected to open this fall to coincide with the arena opening and residential units will be available in early 2011. The project is a joint effort between Bill Weyland of City Properties Group, Valle Jones of Mayin, and Stephen Jones of Greensward.
Financing is primarily provided by Stock Yards Bank & Trust including $7.2 million in loan funds and $7.8 million in federal and state tax equity. Additional financing came from the Downtown Development Corporation’s Housing Fund and the City of Louisville’s METCO program. Developers noted that this is good news for Downtown as funding has been difficult for many planned projects.
Valle Jones has reconfirmed her commitment to historically renovating the structures to federal historic standards. This partly involved waiting to acquire the Burwinkle Hendershot building to allow complete restoration of a grand central staircase and use of an open courtyard. The L & N building dates to 1877 and features classic details while the adjacent whiskey warehouse was built in 1869 by John Andrewartha, architect of Louisville’s City Hall.