Louisville, Kentucky fire crews were called to a massive fire Monday afternoon around 4:30pm on the city’s historic “Whiskey Row.” A fire started in the basement of one of the vacant buildings just hours after construction crews left the buildings for the day.
The source of the fire is not known at this time. Surrounding buildings were evacuated. There are no reported injuries and the fire has been contained. The buildings suffered severe damage but it appears that the buildings facades can be saved.
It’s absolutely nauseating to see fire ravage these buildings that so many people have worked so long and hard to save. ~ Craig Greenberg, Spokesperson, Attorney and Real Estate Developer, President of 21c Museum Hotel
WDRB also reported that there were no fire personnel in the building at 111, 113 and 115 West Main Street Monday evening as the nature of the buildings made it difficult to gauge the safety of sending crews in to investigate — though the fire had been contained, according to Fire Captain Salvador Melendez. These particular buildings were being renovated for lofts, retail and restaurant space.
Old Forester and parent company Brown-Forman recently purchased buildings at 117 and 119 West Main Street to build a new distillery. The properties are part of a revitalization of the Old Forester brand announced in September of 2014. Old Forester plans to invest $45 million dollars in that distillery project. It’s not believed that these buildings were damaged although a restaurant at 123 Main Street will remained closed until the fire is completely extinguished.
Whiskey row in my mind is one of the great blocks in all of America … We’ll reach the grandeur that we had in mind, it might take a little bit longer, but we’ll get there.
~ Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer.