Louisville Metro to seek redevelopment of 16.7-acre former chemical operations site on South 11th Street

Vacant since 1994, 1495 S. 11th St. was last a wastewater treatment plant

LOUISVILLE, KY (May 20, 2020) – Louisville Metro Government today issued a Solicitation of Interest for the redevelopment of the former Rhodia property, located at 1495 S. 11th St. The city is seeking proposals to transform the underutilized and dilapidated property into a sustainable development that will provide needed amenities and jobs to residents.

The 16.7-acre property, located at 1495 S. 11th St., was previously used for manufacturing coating products and other specialty chemicals, first by the Park Hill Neighborhood and then later by French chemical company Rhodia SA. A wastewater treatment plant last operated on the property before it became vacant in 1994. One historic structure, the two-story Jones-Dabney Company Laboratory, remains on the land; it is the only Art Moderne building in Louisville.

“The large Rhodia property, located near downtown and the University of Louisville, provides an immense opportunity for any developer,” said Mayor Greg Fischer. “It will be critical that developers who submit a proposal engage with the surrounding residents and produce a project that complements the neighborhood.”

The redevelopment of the Rhodia property will have a significant, positive impact on the surrounding neighborhoods, including the Parkway Place Apartments public housing complex west of the site, the Mayor said, but that should not mean displacement of existing residents. A plan to mitigate that potential will be key to a successful proposal.

“This property is an important opportunity for the Park Hill Neighborhood. I look forward to working with prospective developers to bring a project to this historic neighborhood,” said Council President David James, D-6.

Responses to the Solicitation of Interest are due no later than 3 p.m. on June 17 and should include:

• A detailed narrative describing aspects of the proposed project, including type and size of development, number and size of buildings, proposed uses, rationale for the design concept and an environmental remediation plan;
• An explanation of the development team’s qualifications and experience undertaking a project of similar size and scope;
• A detailed financial plan, including expected sources of funding, any city and state incentives anticipated to be requested, and a five-year forecast of projected income and expenses;
• A commitment to hire and train workers from the surrounding neighborhoods and CDBG-eligible census tracts;
• A plan to address/mitigate displacement and/or gentrification and for engaging with residents, property owners and neighboring businesses throughout the process.

All submissions will be posted on Louisvilleky.gov for public review on June 19 and the public comment period will run through July 17. Louisville Metro also will host a virtual open house where each developer will give short presentations and respond to questions. The city will provide a location for viewing, provided social distancing can be observed.

Each submission will be evaluated by a seven-person selection committee, and the selected developer will be required to meet regularly with a Project Advisory Group, comprised of Park Hill residents, throughout the planning and construction process.

All Project Advisory Group meetings will be posted and open to the public. This group will help advise Louisville Metro and represent their neighborhood’s interests to the selected developer.

For the full Solicitation of Interest, please visit louisvilleky.gov/government/advanced-planning-and-sustainability/rhodia. To submit a proposal and view additional materials, including environmental assessments and appraisal, please visit louisvilleky.bonfirehub.com/portal/?tab=openOpportunities.