Sports and Learning Complex
The Norton Healthcare Sports and Learning Center is a catalyst for revitalization.
The site, once an uninhabitable brown-field, is now a hub of social connection and community services, attracting visitors and bolstering the economic vitality of Black-owned business and families in the community. Once known as “Louisville’s Harlem,” the neighborhood is home to the United States’ first public library open to Black people. After decades of disinvestment and economic downturn, the new facility catalyzed city-wide development and job creation, offering health, fitness and expanded community services.
The project is the first phase of an ambitious 24-acre master plan to enhance long-term health benefits and learning experiences for equitable communities in West Louisville. The facility features a 200-meter hydraulic track, retractable for a variety of sporting and entertainment events, driving economic activity all year long.
Designed to be a national venue attracting people to Louisville’s hotels and restaurants, the multipurpose venue holds 5,100 event seats, a four-lane bowling alley and an interactive rock-climbing wall. The green space plans to welcome food trucks and host a SNAP-accessible farmers’ market. The complex offers healthy food options to residents year-round with other health-minded amenities such as a community green with an event lawn, dining patio, bike racks and outdoor table tennis. Programmed to provide comprehensive community services, the facility will host educational activities such as ACT/ SAT prep classes, regional chess tournaments and an environmental justice curriculum.
The interior branding pays homage to the history of the town, adorned with photos of Louisville civil rights activists. An exterior civil rights mural welcomes drivers along 30th Street and a poem by a local writer is etched into the pavement, telling the story of what occurred in Louisville in 2020—the police shooting of Breonna Taylor.