No decision on proposed Lexington Road development
The Planning Commission voted to take no action on a proposed zone change with a development plan for 691 residential units on Lexington Road.
Commissioner Ed McClees, who made the motion to table a decision at least until next month’s meeting, cited concerns about traffic in that area of Lexington Road near the Blue Grass Parkway. “I don’t have anything against growth, but I … need a little bit of time to study this,” he said.
His motion carried 5 to 2, with commissioner Tim Parrott voicing his displeasure with delaying a decision prior to the vote last Thursday, Nov. 8.
“I feel like they’ve met the challenge here, and there’s no reason to put this off any further,” said Parrott, who voted in opposition to the motion. “I don’t understand what (waiting) 30 more days is going to do.”
“I don’t thing we should delay (making a decision) for the sake of delaying,” he added.
McClees said his motion to table a decision on a Lexington Road zone change was based on “a lot happening in that one area out there.” He said it’s also important to consider the public services, including schools, which will be needed for people living in this proposed development.
The Planning Commission took no action on the zone change request after closing an Oct. 11 public hearing, which started the clock giving the body 90 days to make a recommendation to the Versailles City Council.
“Woodford Place” – formerly known as Backer Farm II – would bring much-needed diversity of housing types to the area, according to attorney Nick Nicholson, who represented 2101, LLC (Trey Schott), owner of the property at 2101 Lexington Road, during the public hearing.
The request to rezone 68.467 acres from A-1 (agricultural) to B-4 (highway business/7.711 acres) and R-4 (high density residential/60.756 acres) will allow the property owner to move forward with plans for 600 apartment building residential units, 67 townhouses and 24 patio homes, and two commercial lots on land closest to Lexington Road.
In addressing concerns related to the number of housing units planned, Nicholson said development of those units would happen during “a five- to 20-year rollout.”
In a letter to the Planning Commission, Woodford County schools Superintendent Scott Hawkins stated his concerns about approving a development with 691 residential units.
“With so many unknowns related to population growth in Woodford County in the next 5-8 years, it is difficult to accurately predict the burden this new development would place on our school district,” Hawkins stated. “… With our current limited bonding capacity, new construction could be problematic, especially with our greatest need being a new high school.
“I understand there is a need for additional housing in our community. The number of units included in this new request would place a significant burden on the district.”
Barry Drury, recently appointed to represent the county on the commission, recused himself from the vote to delay taking action. Parrott and commission Chair Chad Wells voted in opposition to McLeese’s motion to table action. Plans approved
The commission approved a final development plan for a field house on the campus of Midway University. Two tennis courses are being removed on a site where a 20,000 square-foot field house will be constructed.
The commission also approved a final development plan for 670 McKinney Avenue in the Midway Station industrial park, which will allow the construction of a 21,000 square-foot manufacturing building and 49 parking spaces in its initial phase. The plan shows a 65,550 square-foot building with 49 total parking spaces on the 3.294-acre lot in the future.
The commission also approved a final record plat to create nine single-family lots (Ball Homes) and dedicate a street (Crabapple Road) for public use in the Rose Ridge subdivision at 216 Old Dry Ridge Road. The approval included accepting a surety amount of $36,018 for a sidewalk, final surface course of blacktop for the road and site cleanup.
Oath of office
Drury was sworn-in at the start of last Thursday’s meeting. He succeeds longtime commissioner Jim Boggs as a county appointee. Thanks for legal service
The commission recognized Tim Butler for his legal service and his ongoing efforts to “try to keep us out of trouble and … on the straight and narrow,” said Wells.
Versailles Mayor Brian Traugott, who served as commission chair prior to becoming mayor, described Butler as the type of attorney that a planning commission needs. “He stays out of the way of the policy discussion (and) intervenes when it’s necessary on the legal aspects of it,” Traugott said.
Traugott then jokingly pointed out that Butler did not send him a Christmas card last year. In response, Butler told him “it got lost in the mail,” before adding, “It had a campaign contribution in it,” which elicited even more laughter than Traugott’s earlier jabs at Butler.
Then in his official capacity, Traugott proclaimed Nov. 8 as Timothy C. Butler Day – “Unless that’s not your middle initial and then we’ll change it” – in appreciation of his service to the community.
“I’ve enjoyed every – well not every minute of it, but I’ve enjoyed a lot,” said Butler of his legal service to the Planning Commission.
He said his experiences here are one of the reasons why he was qualified to serve Bardstown as its city attorney, and now he’s looking forward to becoming a fulltime “pa-pa” to his grandchildren in retirement.
Wells identified two candidates interested in succeeding Butler. Both have legal experience in planning and zoning, and are not local attorneys, which Wells said will avoid any possible conflict of interest.
Interviews with Jacob Walbourn and Samuel Carneal were planned for Monday afternoon, Nov. 19.