Mediative Urbanisms – Entry 119

Mediative Urbanisms – Entry 119

Presented by:

Scott Southall – southall (at) cdpengineers (dot) com
Lexington, KY

Jason Hale – jhale (at) cdpengineers (dot) com
Stanford Harvey – SHarvey (at) urbancollage (dot) com

Board 1

Board 2

The Louisville Railroad District takes its inspiration from the convergence of historic railroad artifacts like Baxter Station and the LC&L shops; imprints like the junction of the waterfront / Big Four and Union Station transfer lines; and current rail initiatives like the Bardstown / Baxter streetcar, the Lexington dinner train, and future commuter rail. On its surface the site is unassuming and inconsequential; but because of the northward deflection of Main Street it becomes an axial termination of downtown and the point where the Olmsted Park System, in the form of Beargrass Creek, connects with regional transportation and neighborhood revitalization in Irish Hill and Butchertown.

This urban narrative dictates many of the on-site and off-site moves, especially by restoring a large amount of usable open space in the form of passive parks and interactive wetland environments along Beargrass Creek; the rail station at the Main Street terminus with its recreation of the Union Station train shed; the open-air market perched above the floodplain on platforms tracing the whisky warehouses lost in a flood; and the housing clustered on the peninsulas formed by the creek meanders. Beargrass Creek and the railroad – physical barriers that separate Irish Hill and Butchertown – have become the primary urban design drivers of the proposal and are celebrated as the centerpiece of a mixed-use industrial district that connects the two neighborhoods.

The proposal includes the following:

  • +/- 400 varied housing units
    • Urban flats and townhouse / quads
  • 15,000 square feet of retail space
    • 5,000 SF ground-floor storefronts
    • 10,000 SF station-based
  • Approximately 30,000 SF of temporary outdoor market

In the meshing of the neighborhoods suggested by the bends of the creek, or the rails stretching to Cincinnati, Lexington and beyond, much of Louisville’s essence is revealed in this one unique spot – and its neighborhood renewal and vibrancy is merged with its regional future.