222 Bolivar Street is a widely versatile building in the heart of Lexington. Designed and built by Hendricks Brothers and Co. from New Jersey, this building is located between a student-favorite restaurant, Tolly Ho, and the University of Kentucky’s Gatton Student Center. There is no shortage of foot or automobile traffic on this popular spot. Currently this building is known as South Hill Station Lofts, which houses natives and college students from around the country.
222 Bolivar Street was a prime location for tobacco distribution in Lexington. Situated close to the main L&N railroad station, tobacco was shipped to Cincinnati, Texas, and all the way to the Pacific coast. Kentucky had a big role in the expansion of tobacco trade across the country. One major factor that helped contribute to the distribution of tobacco was the enactment of the Louisiana Purchase, which allowed the transport of tobacco via the Mississippi River to ports in southern Louisiana and others along the river.
From 1975 to 1984, the warehouse was used as a commercial warehouse rental space by Continental Warehousing. After this the warehouse was vacant for nearly a decade. In 1993, Rob McGoodwin and Marshall Thomas of McThomas, INC. had an idea for its purpose and bought the warehouse for $551,000. They originally planned to use the warehouse for storage of records, legal documents, and equipment, until then they received an offer from Laser Quest. This began the project of South Hill Station which quickly gained popularity. Soon after Laser Quest, many other businesses joined the ranks. The building also housed a restaurant, pub, and microbrewery in its lifetime. This warehouse has seen many faces and various changes to the interior.
Today the building is known as the South Hill Station Lofts. It was converted by McGoodwin in 2003 to 86 lofts from the prior entertainment complex. An investment of $6 million was contributed by McGoodwin in order to complete the project.