Monday, August 9, 2010

Louisville's MegaCavern

From Katya Cengel in the C-J...

I didn't know we had this in Louisville. I've been to something similar in Marengo-- to play paintball. Interesting to see, but it wouldn't be worth this admission price (to me)... almost 100-acre subterranean area...Located near the Louisville Zoo, Mega Cavern is one of the largest “buildings” in Kentucky. About two-thirds of the Louisville Zoo and all 10 lanes of the Watterson Expressway near Poplar Level sit above it. It is shaped like a butterfly and encompasses about 4 million square feet, 500,000 square feet of which have been developed for use as a business park.

A little over a year ago, the cavern's owners began offering tours of the developed area.

While there are only four exits, the cavern's high ceilings and open configuration keep one from feeling closed in. Aside from about 50 walls constructed for the business park, 223 huge stone pillars hold up the 26-foot-tall solid-rock ceiling with 18 to 50 feet of dirt above that.

...the temperature remains in the mid-50s to low 60s in the common area and in the low to mid-60s in the building areas. The recording that fills in where Boling leaves off touts the cavern's energy efficiency...

Since purchasing the cavern in 1989 for $1.7 million...created by a huge limestone quarry that operated in the middle of the last century...During the Cuban Missile Crisis in the early '60s, the cavern was designed to shelter 50,000 people if Soviet missiles based in Cuba were launched against the United States...In 2008, the black-tie Bourbon Ball was held in the cavern....


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