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Town Branch Commons Strategic Master Plan

Implement the Town Branch Commons Strategic Master Plan as an element of the Comprehensive Plan.

Town Branch Commons will be a strip of Bluegrass running through downtown Lexington, roughly following the path of Town Branch, Lexington’s first water source. It will link the city's two major trails, Town Branch Trail and the Legacy Trail, to provide 22 miles of uninterrupted trail connecting downtown to the rural landscape. The Town Branch Commons is all-inclusive of the Town Branch Park, Town Branch Trail, immediately adjacent parks, pedestrian spaces, and connections to other downtown parks/plazas/etc. To establish Town Branch Commons as the centerpiece of the community, the following critical pieces need to be ensured and safeguarded, particularly as future development occurs along the trail:

Access Management:

Limit the number of access points to maintain the safety and aesthetics of the multi-use trail, and ensure the fewest potential conflict points between vehicles and pedestrians or cyclists.

Design Guidelines:

Establish design guidelines for existing and future development adjacent to the corridor that strengthen the City’s zoning and further lay out key elements, such as: encouraging pedestrian entrances and facades that face rather than turn their backs to the multi-use trail system; defining appropriate and inappropriate uses along the corridor (e.g. back of house or dumpster locations, drive-thrus, etc.); and ensuring access to surrounding open space and trail systems.

Economic Development:

Perform a study to determine the direct economic impact of potential redevelopment along the entire corridor, as well as the potential social and economic impact to the surrounding neighborhoods and downtown as a whole. This study should also explore incentive feasibility and policy changes that may assist and guide future development along the corridor.

Green Infrastructure:

Continue to make design and development decisions that work to improve the overall water quality and urban ecology of the surrounding properties which directly feed into the Town Branch Commons infrastructure and help to maintain the performative landscape established in the Master Plan.

History & Education:

Enhance the experience of Town Branch Commons through ongoing way-finding and educational signage that highlights not only the history of Town Branch itself but the surrounding neighborhoods, people, and public spaces.

Action Item(s)

  • Establish land use and transportation design guidelines for development adjacent to Town Branch Commons.Perform a study to determine the economic and social impacts of Town Branch Commons.

Goals and Objectives

GOAL A2: Support infill and redevelopment throughout the Urban Service Area as a strategic component of growth.

Objective: A2a

Identify areas of opportunity for infill, redevelopment, adaptive reuse, and mixed-use development.

Objective: A2b

Respect the context and design features of areas surrounding development projects and develop design standards and guidelines to ensure compatibility with existing urban form.

Objective: A2c

Incorporate adequate greenspace and open space into all development projects, which serve the needs of the intended population.

GOAL A3: Provide well-designed neighborhoods and communities.

Objective: A3b

Strive for positive and safe social interactions in neighborhoods, including, but not limited to, neighborhoods that are connected for pedestrians and various modes of transportation.

Objective: A3c

Minimize disruption of natural features when building new communities.

Objective: A3d

Promote, maintain, and expand the urban forest throughout Lexington.

GOAL A4: Address community facilities at a neighborhood scale.

There are no objectives related to this policy that further this particular goal.

GOAL B2: Reduce Lexington-Fayette County’s carbon footprint.

Objective: B2b

Anticipate the community's needs by encouraging environmentally sustainable uses of natural resources.

Objective: B2d

Prioritize multi-modal options that de-emphasize single-occupancy vehicle dependence.

GOAL B3: Apply environmentally sustainable practices to protect, conserve and restore landscapes and natural resources.

Objective: B3a

Support the funding, planning and management of a green infrastructure program.

Objective: B3c

Incorporate green infrastructure principles in new plans and policies, including, but not limited to and transportation.

GOAL D1: Work to achieve an effective and comprehensive transportation system.

Objective: D1a

Support the Complete Streets concept, prioritizing a pedestrian-first design that also accommodates the needs of bicycle, transit and other vehicles.

Objective: D1b

Develop a viable network of accessible transportation alternatives for residents and commuters, which may include the use of mass transit, bicycles, walkways, ridesharing, greenways and other strategies.

GOAL D2: Support a model of development that focuses on people-first to provide accessible community facilities and services to meet the health, safety and quality of life needs of Lexington-Fayette County’s residents and visitors.

There are no objectives related to this policy that further this particular goal.