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OneWest launches new website, showcasing achievements and momentum – Lane Report

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — OneWest, the community development nonprofit committed to elevating our entire city through commercial development growth in the West End of Louisville, announced the launch of its new website, providing a comprehensive platform to showcase the organization’s achievements and ongoing progress. The user-friendly interface and intuitive navigation will ensure a seamless experience for all users. 

OneWest has steadily expanded opportunities for minority business enterprises and raised over $10M in capital funds for commercial and economic development projects in Louisville’s West End while securing loans for major commercial projects.  The organization is also helping small business owners by providing a pathway to property ownership, acquiring 200,000 square feet of commercial real estate space, improving the built environment, increasing workforce opportunities, and fostering partnerships and relationships.  The organization is a product of the 2014 Leadership Louisville Bingham Fellows class. 

“We believe that economic development is a collaborative effort, and our new website will enable us to engage with a wider audience and foster meaningful connections,” said Evon Smith, CEO and President of OneWest. “We are excited to share the stories of entrepreneurs, highlight the impact of our programs, and inspire others to join us in our efforts at creating a vibrant and inclusive economy.” 

In May, OneWest held a grand opening celebration for the opening of the organization’s retail accelerator program for community chefs looking to grow their businesses. Mayor Greenberg joined community leaders and community members for the opening of Gore’s SmokeOut BBQ in the renovated and furnished retail space at one of two previously abandoned row houses at 516 A & B S. 18th St.  Gore’s two-year residency will allow the business owners to hone their concept while also receiving support from OneWest with marketing, business operations, table rotation, human resources, bookkeeping and planning for profit and sustainability.  OneWest anticipates selecting a second restaurant to participate in the accelerator in the next few months. The accelerator is part of OneWest’s efforts to deliver for the community −a product of the organization’s neighborhood forums and a Nielsen survey that identified more dining options as a top commercial development priority for residents. 

In Jan., OneWest announced a $500,000 grant from The Rockefeller Foundation to double the participants in The Plan Room, an accelerator program at 1815 W Broadway targeting Black, minority, and women-owned businesses in the construction industry.  The Plan Room offers training, education, professional service support, mentoring, advocacy resources, funds to support capital needs and networking designed for operational and revenue growth. 

The accelerators are part of a broader OneWest vision of labor force development. 

OneWest’s newest project, a coffee shop at 1821 W. Broadway, is nearly completed. It’s the product of a community-led design process with Urban Design Associates.  This multi-day community design charrette was part of the Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) Legacy Project.  OneWest expects to name a coffee shop operator for the space in the coming weeks.

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