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What Should Our Downtown Look Like?

Fifth Third Pavilion at Cheapside ParkKnox van Nagell, Executive Director of The Fayette Alliance, has been appointed to the recently established LFUCG Downtown Design Guidelines and Form Based Codes Taskforce. This diverse taskforce will discuss and make recommendations on how we can create a downtown that we can all enjoy and be proud of. Council will then consider the group’s recommendations for adoption.

What should our downtown look like? We’re listening. Please continue to tell us what you think.

The LFUCG Downtown Design Guideline and Form Based Codes Taskforce is a great opportunity to discuss and learn from downtown’s recent CentrePointe and CVS pharmacy projects, and collectively implement design guidelines that developers, architects, and community advocates can buy-into. If appropriately established by a diverse cross-section of stakeholders, downtown design guidelines and form based codes can make infill a win-win for the entire community.

Other Lexingtonians serving on this taskforce include Vice-Mayor Jim Gray; Council members Tom Blues, Julian Beard, Linda Gorton, Kevin Stinnett, and Ed Lane; LFUCG officials Chris King, Bettie Kerr, Harold Tate, and Billy Van Pelt; and community representatives Joan Brannon, Rick Ekhoff, Norman Franklin, Bill Johnston, Mary Lee Kerr, Bill Lear, Frank Penn, Graham Pohl, and Michael Speaks.

We all know downtown Lexington has the potential to become one of the truly unique, human-scale, and vibrant urban areas in America. But, as with capitalizing on any opportunity—the devil is in the details. As demonstrated by Charleston South Carolina, Madison Wisconsin, Pittsburgh Pennsylvania, and other progressive places—downtown design and character is essential to the “heart” of any city, and in turn, its economy. For example, each year, 4 million visitors go to Charleston just to walk its streets—translating into billions in revenues, business development, and thousands of jobs in the community. These are impressive numbers, especially in light of today’s economic down-turn.

Having this dialogue moves a CRITICAL piece of the puzzle forward, and The Fayette Alliance commends Council for its leadership on this issue. This is the first step in creating a world-class city in a world-class landscape. We will keep you posted of all progress at fayettealliance.com

Thank you for supporting The Fayette Alliance–and our town, our farms, and our future. We are grateful we have so many loyal and caring supporters like you. Your commitment supports our mission of preserving our signature Bluegrass landscape, while strengthening the city of Lexington through innovative infill redevelopment and the improvement of our natural waterways. Supporters like you ensure that we can continue to promote a sustainable growth model that benefits all of us.