Kroger goes big for UofL in major expansion

A brand new look and a UofL theme for the renovated and expanded Kroger store at Central Station shopping center at the corner of Central Avenue and Third Street.

A far cry from the days when one considered himself lucky to find a University of Louisville shirt at Bacon’s.  

Bird tracks lead shoppers to the Card Wear section.

A new shopping mecca was recently unveiled for fans and students in South Louisville, across from Jim Patterson Stadium. Not totally new, but it’s a major renovation of the Kroger store which features UofL themes throughout the entire facility.

Shoppers are greeted by the Cardinal theme lights in the parking lot at the Central Station Shopping Center. They are greeted by a “Welcome to Kroger In The Ville” at the front door, and an inviting red and black decor throughout the store.

The store reopened a week ago following a one-year $14 million renovation that expanded from 76,000 square feet to 96,000 square feet. A place any Cardinal fan would be proud of, and it features all of the grocery chain’s latest marketing concepts, including a Starbucks, an Eli’s Barbecue, a Wine and Spirits Shoppe, and a scan-as-you-shop system.

Visitors can follow the bird tracks to get to the Card Wear section, which included a wide array of Cardinal merchandise from shirts to accessories. The restaurant, the bakery, the delicatessen were all distinctively marked with UofL signage. The lights at the checkout counter, the staff and even the trash cans are all wrapped in school pride. 

A fun destination, a don’t miss attraction for University of Louisville fans. Should be on the must-see list for prospective students and athletes. A win-win for Kroger and the community.

U of L’s front porch gets some work

The observer misses the sense of anticipation that came with the construction of the KFC Yum! Center and the Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium for the basketball and football programs last summer. So he drives out to Belknap Campus to see what’s going down at the University of Louisville. He is not disappointed.

The surprise is all the work being done on the Oval in front of the Grawmeyer Administration Building where The Thinker is overseeing the beginning of the final phase of a multi-million-dollar beautification effort. The site is a real mess right now, occupied by back hoes, piles of dirt, and construction trucks. No green grass or flowers for a while.

The design of the Oval will reflect the vision of famed parks designer Frederick Law Olmsted and includes replacing the roadway surface with bricks, lighting of the Grawemeyer Hall exterior; replacing the building and Oval steps, installing an irrigation system, enhancing existing landscaping and replacing the existing sod.

The Thinker will be removed temporarily as the project continues. Parking lots are accessible but the circular drive in front of the administration building is partially closed. The project is being done by Marrillia Design & Development, based in Lexington (better do a good job).

The first part of the project, of course, was the new entrance featuring granite structures and fountains designed by Rowland Design and Carman Landscape Architecture. The lighting and fountains are currently turned off because of the other construction work.

Rowland Design Photo