Botanical garden is planned near downtown Louisville

SIGNS FOR THE WATERFRONT BOTANICAL GARDEN HAVE BEEN UP ON ALONG RIVER ROAD FOR YEARS. NOW THERE’S A PLAN TO MAKE THE PROJECT A REALITY. THE BOTANICAL GARDENS WOULD BE BUILT JUST A SHORT DISTANCE FROM THE BIG FOUR BRIDGE AND WATERFRONT PARK. W-L-K-Y’S MARK VANDERHOFF VISITED THE SITE, WHICH SITS ATOP AN OLD LANDFILL. Mark Vanderhoff: Most people don’t know this large undeveloped tract exists just outside of downtown Louisville, but if a local group has its way, this could one day become the Waterfront Botanical Gardens. Kasey Maier: Every single person that comes up says you’ve got to get everybody up here. You got to get people up here. KASEY MAIER IS STANDING ON THE OLD OHIO STREET LANDFILL… VACANT SINCE THE 1970s. THE PROPERTY IS LOCATED JUST OFF RIVER ROAD… BOUNDED BY FRANKFORT AVENUE, INTERSTATE 71, AND BEARGRASS CREEK. TOMORROW, MAIER AND A GROUP CALLED BOTANICA WILL UNVEIL A MASTER PLAN. THEY WANT TO TURN THESE 23 ACRES INTO THE WATERFRONT BOTANICAL GARDENS. Kasey Maier: Japanese garden. The conservatory. We’re standing just about where the conservatory will be. THE PLANS INCLUDE A JAPANESE GARDEN AND TROPICAL PLANT CONSERVATORY, THERE WILL ALSO BE MEDICINAL AND NATIVE PLANTS. MAIER SAYS FEATURES WILL INCLUDE A WATERFALL… ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY ARCHITECTURE… AND OVERLOOKS OF DOWNTOWN AND BEARGRASS CREEK. Kasey Maier: From the road, it looks like it’s all woods, so you just think it’s very wooded up here. And when you get up here, it’s up to the sky, and it’s beautiful, especially on a sunny day. BOTANICA CAN NOW BEGIN RAISING FUNDS FOR CONSTRUCTION. THEY DON’T HAVE AN EXACT FIGURE YET, BUT ESTIMATE THE PROJECT WILL COST AROUND 35 MILLION DOLLARS. Kasey Maier: Once you get that visual in front of you, have these beautiful images that we’ll be showing, people can really see it and begin to feel it and say, wow, we could really have this in Louisville, Kentucky. Mark Vanderhoff: It appears excitement is already building for this project. Tomorrow night’s unveiling party at the Louisville Water Company is sold out. Mark Vanderhoff, WLKY News. THERE’S NO OPENING