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By wmadministrator

After being forced to close due to extensive flood damage incurred this past summer, the Kentucky Derby Museum is turning the situation into a positive by redesigning its exhibits during the renovation period. The overall footprint of the museum will not be expanded but several walls inside will be altered, opening the facility and creating more square footage for exhibit space. Several new themes will be explored in the exhibits, including celebrity attendance, the infield experience, fashion and a deeper look into the life of the horse from foal to Derby contender. The museum is slated to reopen on April 18, 2010.

The University of Louisville School of Dentistry has broken ground on a $40 million renovation project that will add more than 20,000 s.f. and renovate another 200,000 s.f. The project is expected to create more than 500 new construction jobs plus nearly 290 spin-off jobs, and will have an estimated economic impact of some $68 million for the city of Louisville.

Texas Roadhouse, a Louisville-based chain of steakhouse restaurants, is one of the few restaurant chains that has continued to profit despite the nationwide recession, according to a recent report published by U.S. News & World Report. After analyzing sales figures of publicly owned restaurant companies with at least $250 million in annual sales, the study found that Texas Roadhouse was one of only eight restaurants in that category that had gained revenue and market share since the recession began in late 2007. According to the report, Texas Roadhouse earnings are up 21 percent and the company has 15 new restaurants planned for 2010. The report applauded the company’s strategy of adding lower-priced items on which it could make a profit instead of slashing prices on existing menu items.

Sypris Solutions Inc., a Louisville-based company that provides technology-based outsourced services and specialty products, has sold its test and measurement business to Tektronix for $39 million in cash. Sypris President and CEO Jeffrey T. Gill said proceeds of the transaction will enable the company to support growth opportunities in its aerospace and defense segment and strengthen the balance sheet.

The Louisville-based law firm of Greenebaum Doll & McDonald PLLC has formed a dedicated Intellectual Property Practice Group. The group will be led by Louis K. Ebling, a member in the firm’s Cincinnati office, and will offer representation in trademark, patent, trade secrets, copyright, licensing, franchise, advertising, mergers and acquisitions, and litigation and dispute resolution law.

FetterGroup, a Louisville-based marketing distribution and packaging provider, has expanded its operations to the western United States with the opening of a 12,000-s.f. facility in Reno, Nev. The facility will provide high-quality digital printing, bindery, fulfillment and distribution services. FetterGroup President and CEO Terry Gill said the Reno site provides a strategic advantage for distribution in the western United States. FetterGroup has also invested $700,000 in new equipment purchases in 2009 with an additional $2 million budgeted for infrastructure growth in 2010.

The Louisville Convention & Visitors Bureau has added two new sites to its popular Urban Bourbon Trail. Baxter Station Bar & Grill and Z’s Fusion join seven other Louisville bars and restaurants that feature at least 50 bourbons and are committed to the culture of bourbon: The Bar at BLU in the Louisville Marriott Downtown, Bourbons Bistro, The Brown Hotel Bar, Jockey Silks Bourbon Bar in the Galt House, Maker’s Mark Bourbon House & Lounge, The Old Seelbach Bar and Proof on Main.

The 21c Museum Hotel, which was recently voted by Conde Nast Traveler readers as the best hotel in the United States, has announced plans to open another hotel in downtown Cincinnati. The company is investing $45 million to renovate the former Metropole Hotel, which is located adjacent to the Lois and Richard Rosenthal Center for Contemporary Art and across the street from the Aronoff Center for the Arts. The hotel will feature 160 rooms, a contemporary art museum with more than 8,000 s.f. of exhibition space open to the public free of charge, a Proof restaurant and bar, and meeting spaces. Deborah Berke & Partners Architects, the firm that designed the 21c Museum Hotel in Louisville, will serve as design architect for the project.

Louisville Water Co. has broken ground on a $20.5 million pipeline transmission project in east Louisville that will help support rapid residential and commercial growth in the area. The project, which is being funded in part by $4 million in funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, also positions LWC to provide an additional supply of drinking water to Shelby and Franklin counties. The project will create an estimated 164 jobs. The water-main portion will be complete in the fall of 2010; the pump station and storage tank will be complete in 2011.

Dunkin’ Donuts has signed a multi-unit store development agreement with Pace Development LLC for 15 new restaurants in Louisville. The first two locations are expected to open in 2011 and the remainder by 2016. The company’s development in Louisville is part of a strategic growth plan that includes expanding in existing markets while also entering new cities.