Sunday, June 09, 2002

Work on Ali center starting

The Associated Press

        LOUISVILLE — After years of planning and fund raising — and debate over the site and design — ground will be broken Tuesday on the parking structure that will form the foundation of the long-awaited Muhammad Ali Center.

        Mr. Ali and his wife, Lonnie, will preside along with Mayor Dave Armstrong at the evening groundbreaking for the $7.5 million, 450-space garage.

        The Ali Center will recognize the boxing career and the humanitarianism of Mr. Ali, a Louisville native. It will have five galleries with exhibits, many of them interactive.

        The center will also have an outdoor garden, a 250-seat theater, a gift store and a cafe. And it will house the Ali Institute, which will focus on peace-making and dispute resolution and will be run by the University of Louisville.

        The Parking Authority of River City will sell bonds to pay for the garage's construction, said PARC executive administrator Cathy Duncan. PARC bought the site last year for $4.4 million. ;

        Mr. Armstrong predicted that the Ali Center “will be a pivotal draw for visitors and tourists from around the world.”


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- Work on Ali center starting