The shape of things to come at the Bauer property?

The Louisville Landmarks Commission meeting this afternoon could resolve the fate of the Bauer property after a long battle.

Landmarks Commission Architectural Review Committee is scheduled to meet at 5:30 p.m. at the Metro Development Center, 444 S. Fifth Street across from the Cathedral of the Assumption.

Redevelopment opponents and proponents are expected to turn out tonight.

Our sources had an update for us yesterday, telling us redevelopment supporters, including the majority of neighbors, will endorse a plan to replace the former Azalea building with a virtual replica.

What we didn’t know is, there are two designs – a new one preservationists apparently support (above), and the original they’re not so wild about.

The first proposal.

The original design we reported back in February shows a proposed doctors’ office in a new building that looks very similar to the existing Bauer building, which dates back to a 19th Century blacksmith and wagon repair stop. That redevelopment design of the property on Brownsboro Road at Mockingbird Gardens includes a new, contemporary building to house Mesh Restaurant, a restaurant that originated on Massachusetts Ave. in Indianapolis.

The restaurant building would be about 7,500 square foot, with the medical office at 5,300 square feet.

Yesterday we found out there is a alternative by Louisville architect Tim Winters which is “more in keeping with the traditional neighborhood surrounding the Bauer property,” according to our source.

We had heard from redevelopment supporters that the neighborhood consensus is increasing for the replica doctor’s office and contemporary Mesh building plan if only to ensure the alternative plan doesn’t come to fruition. Preservationists are saying if they can’t keep the original building they’d prefer a more traditional design.

The entire Bauer property was designated a local landmark in 2008.

An exception was approved by the  Landmarks Commission in 2010 that approved the construction of a Rite Aid drugstore on the property. That exception also allowed for the demolition of some of the Bauer’s Tavern structure– that was an addition– to make way for a planned restaurant that never happened.

We’ll know more this evening.

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Terry Boyd
Terry Boyd has seven years experience as a business/finance journalist, and eight years a military reporter with European Stars and Stripes. As a banking and finance reporter at Business First, Boyd dealt directly with the most influential executives and financiers in Louisville.

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