The 800 Tower, formerly The 800 Apartments, is a 29-story residential skyscraper in Louisville, Kentucky, located in the city's SoBro neighborhood, nestled between Old Louisville and downtown.[7] At the time construction was complete in 1963, The 800 was the tallest building in Louisville,[8][5] a record it maintained for nearly a decade.[7][5]

The 800 Apartments
The 800 Apartments in 2006
General information
Architectural styleInternational Style[1]
Location800 South Fourth Street
Louisville, Kentucky, 40201
Coordinates38°14′37.85″N 85°45′32.77″W / 38.2438472°N 85.7591028°W / 38.2438472; -85.7591028
Construction started1961
Cost$6 million
Antenna spire331 ft (101 m)[2]
Roof290 ft (88 m)
Technical details
Floor count29
Design and construction
Architect(s)W. S. Arrasmith (Louisville)
Loewenberg & Loewenberg (Chicago)[3][4]
DeveloperF. W. "Fritz" Drybrough Sr.[5][6]
Main contractorRobert E. McKee General Contractor, Inc.

The building hosts the radio transmitter for WXMA (formerly WLRS FM), which has its studio a few blocks away.[2]



Designed by architect William Strudwick Arrasmith of Louisville in consultation with Loewenberg & Loewenberg of Chicago, and developed by Frederick W. "Fritz" Drybrough Sr.,[3][4][5][6][9] construction on The 800 began in 1961. The construction contract was awarded to Robert E. McKee General Contractor, Inc. of Dallas.[10] The building was completed 1963–64,[7][8][11] with construction costs totaling $6 million.[12] Already in January 1964, the building's developer and architects won the Honor Award "for superior design" from the Federal Housing Administration, the agency's first such award, which they gave to 28 out of 315 entries.[6]

On June 16, 2015, Michigan-based property management firm, Village Green announced the purchase of the 800 Building, and renamed it 800 Tower City Apartments, and began renovations expected to exceed $10 million, and take 18 months.[13]

Architectural features

The 800 as seen from Fourth Street looking north toward downtown Louisville

The building, which has a continuous-pour reinforced concrete frame, has an aluminum curtain-wall system on its exterior with the color of the aluminum panels being a distinctive aqua, or turquoise, blue.[8][14] As a result, local residents sometimes refer to it as the "Turquoise Tower of Power" (or just "Turquoise Tower"), a nickname used by disc jockeys who have broadcast from the building.[7][additional citation(s) needed]

The building features an underground parking garage and four 29th floor penthouses along with an outdoor area on the roof. All rental units, except those on the 2nd floor, have outdoor balconies. The ground floor has in various years featured a restaurant from time to time, and in 2017, Bar Vetti, a new Italian restaurant with indoor and outdoor patio seating opened.[15][16]


  1. ^ Poynter, Chris (August 7, 2004). "High rise hits a low note with residents; The 800 apartments lost prestige, face problems". The Courier-Journal. p. A1. Retrieved November 26, 2023 – via
  2. ^ a b "WXMA-FM 102.3 MHz – Louisville, KY".
  3. ^ a b "Architects Here Shuffling Firms". The Courier-Journal. June 30, 1963. p. 66. Retrieved November 25, 2023 – via
  4. ^ a b Kleber, John E., ed. (2001). "Arrasmith, William Strudwick". The Encyclopedia of Louisville. Lexington, Kentucky: University Press of Kentucky. p. 49. ISBN 0-8131-2100-0. OCLC 247857447. Retrieved November 25, 2023.
  5. ^ a b c d Yater, George H. (1987). "Chapter Seventeen; New Directions: Louisville in the Post-Industrial Age". Two Hundred Years at the Fall of the Ohio: A History of Louisville and Jefferson County (2nd ed.). Louisville, Kentucky: Filson Club, Incorporated. p. 230. ISBN 0-9601072-3-1.
  6. ^ a b c "800 Building Will Receive Honor From F.H.A. Today". The Courier-Journal. January 6, 1964. p. 15. Retrieved November 26, 2023 – via
  7. ^ a b c d Ward, Steven (November 9, 2016). "Return of the Turquoise Tower". LEO Weekly. Retrieved November 25, 2023.
  8. ^ a b c Kleber, John E., ed. (2001). "Apartment Buildings". The Encyclopedia of Louisville. Lexington, Kentucky: University Press of Kentucky. p. 40. ISBN 0-8131-2100-0. OCLC 247857447. Retrieved November 25, 2023.
  9. ^ "Former coal broker files suit for $15 million over his arrest". The Courier-Journal. January 26, 1978. p. D8. Retrieved November 26, 2023 – via
  10. ^ "Skyscraper Work To Start In 2 Weeks". The Courier-Journal. November 2, 1961. p. 21. Retrieved May 1, 2024 – via
  11. ^ "Holiday Greetings From 290 Feet". The Courier-Journal. December 7, 1963. p. 15. Retrieved November 25, 2023 – via Workmen still are finishing the inside of the huge building. About 40 percent of the apartments now are occupied.
  12. ^ Hall, Christopher (October 9, 2002). "Longtime resident leaves 800 Apartments". The Courier-Journal. p. 82. Retrieved November 26, 2023.
  13. ^ Finley, Marty (June 19, 2015). "Village Green CEO: 800 Apartments 'will be the best apartment building in Louisville'". Louisville Business First. Archived from the original on December 27, 2019. Retrieved November 29, 2023.
  14. ^ Luhan, Gregory; Domer, Dennis; Mohoney, David (2004). The Louisville Guide. Princeton Architectural Press. p. 187. ISBN 978-1-56898-451-3. Retrieved November 26, 2023.
  15. ^ Mann, David A. (September 8, 2016). "Louisville restaurateurs plan a new concept in the 800 building". Louisville Business First. Archived from the original on September 9, 2016. Retrieved November 25, 2023.
  16. ^ "INSIDE LOOK: Step inside the new Bar Vetti restaurant". October 11, 2017.
Preceded by Tallest building in Kentucky
Succeeded by