I work in the downtown area of Louisville, Kentucky. If you don't live here, you may think of that as the hip, urban place to be, but we're not quite your New York, Atlanta, or Chicago. The town is definitely trying to become more "metro" but we still have some miles to go before that happens. To rejuvenate the downtown area, the University of Louisville is planning a new home for their basketball team, set to open Fall 2010. This swanky new arena has been the talk of the town for a while, but those within blocks of the construction are ready for its completion.
My office building is located about a block from the arena site which sounds glorious, but the area surrounding the new location is, how shall I say, somewhat depressed. Across the street from my building is a huge hole in the ground next to a row of buildings that have been standing since the early 1900s but empty long enough that we're convinced unknown mold is growing inside and various wildlife call it home. Thankfully that will all be demolished and rebuilt as a luxurious retail facility to complement the arena up the street.
We've encountered extended road closings and other peripheral obstacles as the area becomes prepared for the new arena. This morning at 7am, one of the current buildings that has to get out of the way was imploded. I love that word...implosion. It sounds exactly like what it means. To prepare for the impending implosion, my company had to take special precautions....first step, shut down our air conditioning system to avoid soot invasion. Since our building would have no air during the hottest part of the summer, all of our computers had to be shut down to protect them from overheating and having their own implosion party.
Even though the imploded building isn't very tall, the idea of watching a building intentionally collapse was intriguing to me. Not intriguing enough for me to be downtown at 7am, but I was up to watch it live on the local stations. I could have watched it all from the roof of my parking garage, where the media was headquartered, about two blocks away, but the television coverage was probably better. Although it lasted only a few seconds, it was cool.
At the end of this post is one of a ka-zillion videos on YouTube. This one was my favorite as a Daddy took his child to the new Humana building to watch it happen. As the video ends, you won't see my building, but it's just below the bottom right hand corner, if you'd like to visualize where I spend my Mondays-Fridays. If you want to see more videos (or if you are just that bored), go to YouTube and search "louisville implosion." There is one that shows the Mayor's SUV parked illegally. Good times. In other local Louisville news, while half our city was glued to watching a building disappear in a puff of smoke, the rest of our city was standing in line for the American Idol auditions. Man, I love my hometown!