Wednesday October 18, 2017
News Topics

A community design workshop will be held on Tuesday, October 17 at 6 p.m. at the Gheens Lodge at the Parklands of Floyds Fork to gather public input for the South Floyds Fork Vision, an ongoing process to create a visionary plan that will provide guidance for authentic, healthy, equitable, sustainable, and well-connected growth in the South Floyds Fork area.

The 4,000 acre Parklands of Floyds Fork is a transcendent asset for Louisville that includes four major parks linked by a park drive, an urban trail system, and watershed. The Parklands is expected to spur development and increase population in the area. The South Floyds Fork Vision will serve as a guide for future development and infrastructure investment in the study area.

The study area is bounded by Bardstown Road and Shelbyville Road to the north and south and the Gene Snyder Expressway and the county line to the west and east.

The South Floyds Fork Vision will be led by a team of representatives from Develop Louisville, Metro Council District 20, and local and national consultants, in coordination with representatives of the Parklands of Floyds Fork and Metro agencies. An advisory group, consisting of Senator Julie Raque Adams along with District 20 residents and stakeholders, has been formed to guide the process. Advisory Group members were recommended by Councilman Stuart Benson and appointed by Mayor Greg Fischer.

“The South Floyds Fork Area Vision is a project that will shape the future character of a large portion of District 20 surrounding the Parklands,” District 20 Councilman Stuart Benson said. “Please plan on joining us on October 17 to make your concerns and opinions heard.”

Once the Advisory Group has completed its work, the South Floyds Fork Vision will be forwarded to the Planning Commission and Metro Council for review and adoption. It is anticipated that adoption will occur in summer 2018.

For more information, visit https://www.floydsforkvision.com or https://louisvilleky.gov/government/advanced-planning/south-floyds-fork-area-study

Joining with other cities and organizations across the country, Mayor Greg Fischer has proclaimed October 5 as Energy Efficiency Day to bring attention to the benefits of being energy efficient including utility bill cost savings, support of a thriving clean energy sector, reduction of emissions and improvement of air quality. Saving energy means saving money.

“Upgrades in energy efficiency in the workplace, the home or commercial business reduces energy bills and improves environmental health,” Fischer said. “The city continues to take steps to increase energy efficiency in its buildings so that less money is needed to operate our buildings and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. I encourage property owners across the city to consider implementing energy efficiency measures.”

Energy efficiency speaks directly to the Mayor’s sustainability goals to decrease energy use citywide per capita and in city-owned buildings.

Since 2013, the city has conducted significant energy efficiency improvements including lighting and HVAC upgrades, solar panels, and building management system controls, in more than 200 city operated buildings. In 2016, these energy efficiency improvements reduced an amount of carbon emissions equivalent to planting 45,963 trees and removing 3,034 cars from the road.

The city also partners with the Louisville Energy Alliance to promote ENERGY STAR certification for non-residential buildings and launched a cool roof rebate program that can reduce energy costs by up to 10% for the property owner.

Other cities that are joining in Energy Efficiency Day include Chicago, Denver, Memphis, New Orleans, Knoxville, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh.

If you want like to invest in energy saving methods in your home, workplace or commercial business, please contact the Office of Sustainability at 574-6285 or sustainability@louisvilleky.gov.

To view who else is joining in Energy Efficiency Day, visit https://energyefficiencyday.org/

Automotive frame manufacturer Metalsa Structural Products Inc. will add 113 jobs at its Owensboro facility with a $36.5 million expansion to produce a new line of stamped and welded components.

“With three production facilities in the commonwealth, Metalsa stands as one of our largest automotive employers,” Gov. Bevin said. “We are grateful for this additional expansion and these new jobs. This will strengthen Kentucky’s economy and further propel us toward our goal of being the American center of engineering and manufacturing excellence. We welcome this growth and congratulate both Metalsa and the Owensboro community on their success.”

The $36.5 million will include investment in robotic welding cells, assembly line robots, infrastructure and building expansions to increase the facility’s square footage to accommodate the new production line and additional warehouse space. The expansion began this summer and hiring is for September 2018 through June 2019. Company leaders expect production to begin in March 2019.

In Kentucky, Metalsa currently employs about 2,700 people at three vehicle-frame facilities. It established the Owensboro facility in 1997, opened its Hopkinsville plant in 1989 and its Elizabethtown plant dates to 1994.

Established in 1956 as Manufacturas Metálicas Monterrey with a plant in Churubusco, Mexico, the company initially produced structures for the construction industry then began manufacturing automotive parts four years later. The company changed its name to Metalsa in 1980. Current products include frames and fuel tanks for light and commercial vehicles, among other items.

Kentucky’s automotive industry — a key sector of the commonwealth’s economy — employs more than 100,000 people at 500-plus facilities across the state. This year through August, the industry announced a dozen new locations or expansions totaling $3.9 billion in investments. Those are expected to create more than 3,100 full-time jobs.

Kentucky’s ideal location as a gateway between the nation’s two auto-production hotbeds offers suppliers the opportunity to produce components in a low-cost, right-to-work state and ship their products quickly and cost-effectively to assembly plants in Kentucky and across the Midwest and South.

Sen. Joe Bowen, of Owensboro, said the announcement will benefit the region for years to come.

“It is a great day when a company that already employs so many Kentuckians chooses to expand its operations in our city,” he said. “I am pleased that Metalsa chose to increase its investment in its Owensboro facility and I thank them for their dedication to our community.”

Rep. Suzanne Miles, of Owensboro, commended Metalsa on its commitment to the region and thanked those involved with landing the project.

“I want to congratulate Metalsa Structural Products on their expansion and thank them for their continued investment in the 7th District,” Rep. Miles said. “This expansion will create jobs for the Owensboro area and bring continued economic development to our region. Metalsa Structural Products has long been a successful corporate and community partner for Owensboro, and I want to applaud all those who made this investment possible.”

Owensboro Mayor Tom Watson said the company’s growth reflects the pro-business climate of the community.

“The City of Owensboro is proud and honored to be the site of Metalsa’s expansion,” Mayor Watson said. “The company’s commitment to Owensboro is a testament to our positive business environment, a highly-skilled workforce and superb quality of life. We look forward to working with this fine corporate citizen for many years to come.”

Daviess County Judge-Executive Al Mattingly welcomed news of the expansion.

“On behalf of the fiscal court and the citizens of Daviess County, I congratulate Metalsa on their expansion,” Judge Mattingly said. “This project will create high-wage jobs, and illustrates the company’s confidence in our workforce and community.”

To encourage the investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) in June preliminarily approved Metalsa for tax incentives up to $3.5 million through the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based incentive allows a company to keep a portion of its investment over the agreement term through corporate income tax credits and wage assessments by meeting job and investment targets.

In addition, Metalsa can receive resources from the Kentucky Skills Network. Through the Kentucky Skills Network, companies can receive no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job training incentives. In fiscal year 2016, the Kentucky Skills Network provided training for nearly 95,000 Kentuckians and 5,000 companies from a variety of industry sectors.

For more information on Metalsa, visit www.metalsa.com.

A detailed community profile for Daviess County can be viewed at http://bit.ly/DaviessCoKy.

Information on Kentucky’s economic development efforts and programs is available at ThinkKentucky.com. Fans of the Cabinet for Economic Development can also join the discussion on Facebook or follow on Twitter. Watch the Cabinet’s “This is My Kentucky” video on YouTube.

Photo: State Treasurer website

Kentucky State Treasurer Allison Ball was selected as one of twenty-five participants for The Governing Institute’s 2018 Women in Government Leadership Program.

“It is an honor to be selected for The Governing Institute’s Women in Leadership Program,” Treasurer Ball said. “We need more women to run for office and I am proud to be a part of this program that encourages women to assume a greater level of leadership.”

The Women in Leadership Program brings together elected female leaders from across the nation to acknowledge their contributions, create a forum to discuss leadership, and seek their help in mentoring the next generation of female leaders to run for office. Each class also includes one rising star, a young woman not yet serving in elected office, but with the interest and potential to run in the future.

The Governing Institute is a division of e.Republic, the nation’s only media and research company focused exclusively on state and local government and education. Governing focuses on improving government performance and outcomes through research, decision support, and executive education to help public sector leaders govern more effectively.

“The women in the Class of 2018 are subject matter experts, negotiators, civic activists, and pioneers,” said Julia Burrows, director of the Governing Institute. Nominations were received for nearly 150 women for the Class of 2018. The class was selected based on career and educational accomplishments, personal recommendations, a commitment to actively participate and the goal of seating a diverse class. The 25 women in the program’s new class will be profiled in the February 2018 issue of Governing magazine and will participate in Governing events throughout the coming year.

More than 40 students from the Jefferson County Public School (JCPS) District are among the 16,000 across the country named 2018 National Merit Scholarship semifinalists.

Semifinalists in the 63rd annual National Merit Scholarship Program were announced today by the National Merit Scholarship Corp. and will compete for scholarships worth about $32 million. Semifinalists from JCPS include students from Ballard, Brown, DuPont Manual, Eastern and Male Traditional High. The students are:

  • Ballard High School’s Claire Keum, Sarang Park and Alexander Reaugh
  • Brown High School’s Sovann Chang
  • DuPont Manual High School’s Alec Adamov, Anirudh Adavi, Tanner Bielefeld Pruitt, Priyadarshini Chandrashekhar, Emily Clark, Alice Deters, Caroline Foshee, Ryan Hassel, Micah Herndon, Brandon Huff, Charles Im, Benjamin Jiang, Jobi Jose, Govind Krishna, Sophie Lai, Lindsey Lapinski, William Morgan, Joshua Olliges, Alan Pascua, Riti Pathak, David Qiu, Saralee Renick, Haylee Richter, Camille Rougier, Amit Sahoo, Gregory Schwartz, Luke Sheridan-Rabideau, Elijah Shina, Harshini Sirvisetty, Madison Sneve, Lucy Suo, Spencer Thompson, Megan Wang, Shelby Young and Annie Zhang.
  • Eastern High School’s Truman Smith
  • Male Traditional High School’s Dylan Boone

“JCPS continues to produce some of the best and brightest students in the state and country, and the achievements of these talented students today are an example of that,” said JCPS Acting Superintendent Dr. Marty Pollio. “I am very proud of what they are accomplishing both in and out of the classroom.”

The students were among approximately 1.6 million juniors in more than 22,000 high schools who entered the program by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, which serves as an initial screen of program entrants. The nationwide pool of semifinalists, representing less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors, includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state.

To become a finalist, the semifinalist and his or her high school must submit a detailed scholarship application, in which they provide information about the semifinalist’s academic record, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment, and honors and awards received.

From the approximately 16,000 semifinalists, about 15,000 are expected to advance to the finalist level. Finalists will be announced early next year.

Photo: Louisville Housing and Community Development

Louisville Creating Affordable Residences for Economic Success (CARES) and the Louisville Affordable Housing Trust Fund (LAHTF) will be jointly hosting four informational meetings regarding the upcoming round of funding available for these two sources. This round of funding is comprised of $14.5 million dollars and is designed to provide gap and/or bridge financing to developers building affordable workforce housing or incorporating affordable workforce housing into market rate projects.

CARES and LAHTF encourage adaptive re-use of vacant and abandoned properties, energy efficiency, universal design and mixed income projects integrating low-income housing.

Meetings will be held at the following dates, times and locations:

  • September 27 at 10:00 am at Middletown Firehouse (108 Urton Lane)
  • September 28 at 9:00 a.m. at Edison Center (701 W. Ormsby Lane)
  • September 28 at 2:00 p.m. at Southwest Regional Library (3920 Dixie Highway)
  • September 29 at 10:00 a.m. at South Central Regional Library (7300 Jefferson Boulevard)

For more information, please visit https://louisvilleky.gov/government/housing-community-development

Mayor Greg Fischer today announced a $200 million economic development plan for about 35 underused acres in Butchertown that will be anchored by a 10,000-seat, 15-acre soccer stadium, allowing Louisville to compete for an MLS franchise.

“This is an exciting, worthwhile project that takes an underused, very visible swath of land and creates a vibrant new stadium district that builds on the momentum downtown, in Nulu and Butchertown,” the Mayor said. “This is a smart opportunity, and when smart opportunities to move our city forward come up, we’re going to grab them.”

(Listen to Mayor Greg Fischer Podcast segment about the development and stadium)

Louisville City Football Club (LCFC) will build the $50 million stadium and serve as developer of the overall project, which will include retail, a hotel and offices, built by private investment.

Louisville Metro Government’s sole investment is $30 million to purchase the land for the development and do brownfield remediation and public infrastructure improvements. The project is expected to increase hotel, restaurant and retail amenities nearby and create a “stadium district” where the soccer stadium, Louisville Slugger Field and the Yum! Center are all within blocks of each other, along the same line of sight.

The city’s $30 million portion will be covered by general obligation bond — $25 million to buy the land and $5 million as a contribution to brownfield remediation and public infrastructure.

No Metro tax dollars will be used for stadium construction. In fact, LCFC will pay $14.5 million back to the city over 20 years from sales of land, rent from leases of land, and stadium rent. In addition, if the stadium hits certain financial markers, the city has an opportunity to share in the upside of that growth, up to $2 million.

(See the factsheet about the development and stadium)

On behalf of Louisville City Football Club, Chairman and President John Neace, thanked Mayor Fischer and Louisville Forward “for their commitment to the growth of professional soccer in Louisville.

“Today marks another important step in our vision to be the best United Soccer League club in the country, with the ultimate goal of bringing Major League Soccer to Louisville,” Neace said. “We look forward to building a world-class soccer stadium and surrounding development that continues revitalization in the Butchertown neighborhood.”

With Metro Council approval, the city will work with LCFC on an application to the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) for a mixed-use TIF for the project.

To be eligible for state participation in a TIF, the local applicant (the city) must have some financial participation in the project; in this case, the city’s participation would be the money spent on land acquisition, brownfield remediation and debt service of the bonds to pay for the land.

The city will not commit any of its local property tax revenues to be included in the TIF.

Construction of the project will comply with Metro Ordinance 37.75 with respect to minority, women and local participation goals: 20 percent minority participation, 5 percent women participation, with 75 percent of the work going to residents of the Louisville MSA.

A city-commissioned feasibility study confirmed that a soccer-specific stadium is needed to maintain and grown professional soccer in Louisville. The study called for a soccer-specific stadium, with the ability to hold 10,000 seats, to be built by 2020.

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