Whiskey Alley Proposal Could Create Another Entertainment District Downtown

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Bourbon Street in New Orleans, Broadway in Nashville and Beale Street in Memphis are some of the most iconic entertainment districts in the country. If some business owners get their wish, downtown Louisville could get something similar.

Checking out the lunch offerings at Troll Pub Under the Bridge, Brian Marvin was enjoying one of his frequent visits to downtown Louisville for work.

“It’s really grown a lot in just the past six months I’ve been coming here,” Marvin said.

He was dining in one of the businesses on the 100-block of W. Washington Street just north of Whiskey Row. Area business owners, like Realtor Tim Mulloy, want to turn this block into a bustling entertainment district called Whiskey Alley.

“It continues the amazing growth we have had over the last 15 years in downtown Louisville,” Mulloy said.

Louisville Metro Council is considering this request. If approved, area business owners that make up the Whiskey Alley partners could temporarily shut the street down to host live music, tailgates and other special events from time to time. Just like they do at Fourth Street Live! The vision for Whiskey Alley is that people could buy food and drinks in one business then take it onto the street to mingle with others who might have dined at another business.

Chris Gilbert lives in Indiana, but comes to Louisville sometimes for business or big events. A few years ago he went to some NCAA events at the KFC Yum! Center, located just a stone throw away from Whiskey Alley. He said it would have been nice to have an outdoor entertainment option before those types of events.

“Having a centralized area that allows folks to come mingle amongst each other outdoors is always a good thing,” Gilbert said.

Whiskey Allery partners also hope to add some special string lighting between buildings and signs to designate the area. That investment would solely come from those business partners. The city would still own the street, but Whiskey Alley business owners involved would be the ones paying for the cosmetic improvements, live music and security for those special events.

The proposal has been assigned to the Labor and Economic Development Committee for consideration. If approved, Whiskey Alley hopes to start hosting events by late spring.