at Oldham-Jefferson line
business officials take notice
of growth on Oldham Countys doorstep
Helen E. McKinney
(November 2006) Trish Garlock believes that
for a retail area to succeed, it has to be a destination.
Customers will be drawn to an area because they want to be there, she
Kentucky Edition Cover
Garlock and her husband, Rick, own The Treasured Child
toy store on La Granges Main Street. They recently considered
moving their business to a new mixed-use residential-retail development
in the northern section of Oldham County called Norton Commons. For
them, the move would have meant moving their home and business.
Developments like the one going up north of I-71 and near the Gene Snyder
Freeway are what Garlock termed live and work areas. Had
they moved, they would have lived over their shop and owned and operated
the business themselves until they decided to give it up. Then the business
would have become a rental property for them.
Garlock calls this arrangement a symbiotic relationship. People who
didnt already live there but liked what they saw would be drawn
into the development to live. Other businesses would be drawn in and
would feel like they were part of a special niche.
Meanwhile, just south of I-71, Old Brownsboro Crossings is quickly taking
shape with Lowes Home Improvement, Costco Wholesale Warehouse,
banks and restaurants springing up around a new Norton Medical Plaza
and next to the 15-acre site of a future 127-bed Norton Brownsboro Hospital.
Construction on the hospital, to be completed in two phases, is expected
to begin in spring 2007. The first phase of the Medical Plaza, meanwhile,
includes physicians offices, an Immediate Care Center, Diagnostic Center
and Louisville Oncology.
Area residents already can shop at Lowes and Costco and dine at
DQ Grill & Chill fast food or the Red Robin Gourmet Burgers and
Spirits restaurant. And a new Olive Garden restaurant is now under construction
at the center.
Just beyond this development on Brownsboro Road is a new Walgreens and
surrounding businesses and office complex.
Running for (tax) shelter
by Don Ward
new Olive Garden is taking shape
at Old Brownsboro Crossings on
Brownsboro Road and I-265 in
eastern Jefferson County.
As residential development in and near Oldham County spreads,
economic factors must scramble to keep up the pace, local officials
say. New homes are constantly going up, but residents money must
be kept within the county to keep the tax base afloat. Its a central
issue among Oldham County economic development leaders, especially those
charged with bringing new jobs into the county to help offset the rising
cost of local taxes on residents.
The problem is exacerbated as more people move into the county but continue
to work elsewhere, usually commuting to nearby Louisville.
Joe Schoenbaechler, executive director of the Oldham County Economic
Development Authority Inc., sees Norton Commons as job market competition.
Approximately 436 acres lie in Metro Louisville and 159 lie in Oldham
County. From a commercial standpoint, the development affects
our ability to attract retail businesses, said Schoenbaechler.
The 595-acre Norton Commons will include 2,880 residential units, 360,000
square feet of office space and 200,000 square feet of retail area.
Operating as a self-contained community, this development mimics the
design elements of communities of the past, its developers say.
Garlock stressed that while such developments can be a really
big gamble for businesses, they can also be quite convenient for
those who live in the residential areas. Everything you need is right
there within walking distance, she noted, including restaurants, banks,
grocery stores, and entertainment options. So many things are
smart about it.
Another plus is that Norton Commons will provide a wonderful price
range for increased property values, said Garlock. The potential
exists for more buyers with disposable incomes to pump money back into
There are many benefits that can be shared, said Schoenbaechler. Oldham
County still has two-thirds of its residents traveling to Louisville
every day, he said. Such developments within the county that expand
the job market would cut down on fuel and wear and tear of roads.
by Don Ward
sign announces the coming
Norton Brownsboro Hospital, set to
begin construction in early 2007.
At Old Brownsboro Crossings, Lowes officials expect
to draw customers from as far away as Carrollton, heading north up I-71.
Were very pleased to be a part of the growth here,
said sales manager Kenny Lanham. The store will primarily service northeast
Louisville and Oldham County, but also the Lake Forest subdivision near
Middletown and up the I-71 corridor, Lanham said.
Lowes corporate offices conduct surveys to determine market conditions
and this area has proven to be a winner for us, he said.
Lowes located in a development with established neighborhoods
There are eight Lowes in the Louisville area. This store will
employ 150 people, mostly from Jefferson and Oldham counties.
The first Costco in Kentucky opened in late October just across the
development from Lowes. Officials there expect to employ an average
of 160 people. Manager Tony Rodriguez said Costco had located to a
very affluent, growing area. Having been a business owner for
13 years, Rodriguez said Costco is constantly trying to expand,
and Kentucky was a prime location.
He said Costco is well known for employing mostly local people. It is
a one-stop shopping convenience offering a pharmacy, one-hour photo,
electronics, house wares, fresh produce, a bakery, deli that serves
fresh sandwiches, optical business, tire shop and gas pumps.
When asked if he thought Costco would compete for business with Sams
Club, Rodriguez replied, There is plenty of room for Costco and
up with neighbors
Meanwhile, not all of the new developments are headed
to eastern Jefferson County. Schoenbaechler cited the OCEDA business
campus that is being developed on New Moody Lane in La Grange as another
real boon to the local job market. The campus has already landed the
Rawlings Group, a firm that compiles claims data for heath insurers.
The company plans to establish a business that will employ 700 people
by November 2007 as it relocates from Louisvilles Waterfront Plaza.
by Don Ward
Wholesale Warehouse opened
next door in late October attracting its
first visitors, who signed up
for Costco membership.
This will make it the largest private employer in
the county, Schoenbaechler said. While Jefferson County may be
providing more service and retail job opportunities, it will take something
larger like a manufacturing firm to cause more concern about a loss
of jobs in Oldham County, he said.
With the implementation of the Rawlings Group within the OCEDA business
campus, Oldham County will be able to hold its own in a growing urban
area, officials say. There are certain things that the county does not
have that Schoenbaechler would like to see it have in the campus, such
as a higher education institution or more entertainment opportunities.
As long as planning is right and infrastructure elements are in place
first, Schoenbaechler said the county population will increase, and
it will make sense to create new jobs. These are the initial
steps that must be taken to attract people to the county.
OCEDA is in Phase I of an interstate overpass project over I-71, and
recently began road construction and improvements on the campus. An
interchange ramp will be installed at Exit 22 (Hwy. 53), as well as
signals and turning lanes.
Deanna Epperly Karem, Oldham County Chamber of Commerces executive
director, said emphasis needs to be placed on recruiting, attracting
and growing service industries within the county. She would like to
see regional headquarters move to the area.
This is a great time to be living and working in Oldham County,
she said. You can feel the momentum building as the county starts
to profit from its successes.
Karem said all businesses on the east side of Jefferson County attract
Oldham County residents there to eat, shop and visit doctors. But she
doesnt see any competition between the two counties in terms of
job offerings. Instead, she sees Jefferson County as a huge support
system for Oldham County.
by Don Ward
was among the first large stores
to open at the new development.
Developments such as Norton Commons provide an opportunity
for jobs and adds to the quality of life, she said. I hope this
happens on both sides of the county line.
Karem continued, I really believe in regionalism. The more these
two counties work together, the more opportunities it provides for the
Karem added that Oldham County needs to re-examine its tax base in an
effort to relieve the burden from residents. The challenge comes in
finding a balance between attracting people to the county and making
things fair for businesses.
Another job market soon to be developed is a new hospital and doctor
offices in the Anchorage area. Baptist Hospital Healthcare is building
a Baptist Hospital East addition off of Old Henry Road in the East Point
Significant growth is moving in this direction, toward eastern Jefferson
County and Oldham County, said Karem. With residential comes retail,
then commercial, she said.
Even northern Kentucky is moving in this direction, she
Norton Commons, Old Brownsboro Crossing and the OCEDA business campus
provide pockets that add value to the community, said Karem.
Where we go from here will set the precedence for the future.
Back to November 2006