Rick Blackwell is a charter member of the Louisville-Jefferson County Metro Council. He was re-elected in November 2008, 2012, and 2016 and represents the areas Pleasure Ridge Park, Riverport, and parts of Valley Station and Iroquois neighborhoods.
Councilman Blackwell has served in a number of leadership roles on the council. He has been elected Caucus Chair and in 2007 was elected President of the Council. In 2011, he was selected as Chair of the Redistricting Committee to redistrict the 26 Metro Council district boundaries.
In 2018, the Councilman serves as Chair of the Metro Council’s Appropriations Committee. He is also a member of the Appointments Committee and the Budget Committee.
He is particularly proud of his work with schools and youth in the district. Each month during the school year District 12 elementary and middle school students participate in Blackwell’s Bookworms, a program to encourage youth to read. He has helped install playgrounds at three elementary schools in the district and secured the funds for the renovation of Valley Sports Baseball/Softball Complex and helped add Challenger Field. He also spearheaded the redevelopment of Riverview Park in 2011.
Councilman Blackwell works diligently with local businesses and residents to attract development to our area. He has spearheaded the Dixie Highway Redevelopment project and turned an initial investment of $70,000 from the District 12 CIF in 2009 into more than $50 million in local, state and federal funding. He is proud of the collaborative efforts that the New Dixie Highway Project has spurred and believes that the public involvement has contributed to improving the scope of the project and keeping the momentum going. Construction for the Dixie Do-Over began in late 2017 and is scheduled to be largely completed by the end of 2019. The project is designed to make this heavily-traveled road safer for drivers, bus riders and pedestrians, while also improving the overall look of Dixie Highway. Design improvements include installation of new sidewalks, raised concrete and landscaped medians to reduce the number of left-hand turns from and onto the roadway, and the region’s first Bus Rapid Transit line.
Riverview Park, formerly known as the Greenwood Boat Docks, is an important project for Councilman Blackwell and the entire Southwest community. Phase 1 of the Riverview Park Masterplan was completed in 2011 and included an updated boat ramp and parking lot, an architecturally award-winning bathroom building, and a very popular spray ground. While funding for the remaining phases has not been available, Councilman Blackwell continues to add to the Park’s amenities each year using District 12 CIF funding and capital projects including the addition of a new pavilion, additional swings to enjoy the view, MetroWatch security cameras and free WiFi. New improvements this year include a new pavilion and parking lot along Cane Run and a grass amphitheater area.
The Riverview Independence Festival celebrates the 4th of July holiday with food, music and fireworks all with the beautiful Ohio River backdrop in southwest Louisville. Councilman Blackwell first hosted this annual event in 2012 and it has grown to become a southwest tradition. The event features live music, a kid’s activity area, and a fantastic fireworks display lit from a barge on the river. It is FREE and a great way to celebrate this holiday with your neighbors.
Councilman Blackwell does his utmost to stay in touch with the people of District 12. He hosts a District Dialogue quarterly throughout the year. Each dialogue features an update on events and happenings in District 12. Representatives from MSD, Codes and Regulations, and Louisville Metro Police Department are on hand for constituents to directly connect with these Metro agencies. Coffee with your Councilman is another opportunity for constituents to connect with Councilman Blackwell to discuss issues, take questions and listen to concerns. This informal event takes place one Saturday a month at 10:00 am at local coffee shops. Call his office at 502.574.1112 or visit us on Facebook for dates and locations.