LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – Members of the Metro Council Planning and Zoning Committee examine the historic designation of the Odd Fellows Building in downtown Louisville.
The building, located at the corner of Third Street and Muhammad Ali Boulevard, was constructed in the late 1800s and recently received a Historic Landmark designation by the Landmarks Commission.
However, Metro Council is reviewing this designation.
The owner of the building, the Omni Hotel, requested that the building be demolished. The Omni has said the land will be reallocated but has yet to come up with anything.
“The city wants to spend over 400,000 taxpayer dollars to demolish this magnificent building and create another vacant lot in downtown Louisville,” said Steve Wiser, president of the Louisville Historical League, which opposes the demolition .
Wiser and several other members of the community said the dismantling of the building was unwarranted given the already empty land next to the building, which is also owned by Omni.
“We have a lot of vacant land in downtown Louisville,” Wiser said. “Why are we spending taxpayers’ money to create another? “
Members of the planning and zoning committee debated on Tuesday whether the historic monument designation should be maintained.
There were no votes or actions, but an order supporting or opposing the designation is expected to be filed by Monday.
“I have a few questions about the Monuments Commission and how it came to its decision,” said Metro Council chairman David James.
James said he is still thinking and talking with other board members about how the designation was made. Those opposing the demolition urge council members to preserve the building’s history.
“I see no reason to consider its demolition at this point,” said Wiser.
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