Public hearing on Fayette land use planning draws a big crowd

WEKU | By Stu Johnson

Once again, Lexington’s Council Chamber filled up late Tuesday afternoon for a long-standing discussion. The Council met as a committee of the whole to take public comment on Fayette County’s comprehensive plan.

Specifically, the focus was supposed to be on goals and objectives of the comp plan. It’s the guiding document for planning development. Jim Host is known for pioneering collegiate sports marketing and production services. Host said the bluegrass community is in, quote, “deep trouble,” with a dip in population.

“I’m not in favor of encroaching on any horse farms, which have made us the attraction for many years, as it is. But, there’s land in this county that can and should be developed that doesn’t cause any damage to our horse farms,” said Host.

Developing outside the urban service boundary is always a debated issue. Judy Worth, of the Planning Commission, told Council there is a list of criteria that should be used to determine whether specific parcels of land should be added when a new process dictates expansion is necessary.

Jim Shropshire owns a family farm near an often talked about expansion area not far from the interstate. He opposes pushing the boundary further out.

“It’s been operated as the family farm for 220 years. And we’d like to see it continue and obviously, if development comes and surrounds us, it makes it very untenable,” said Shropshire.

Former Vice Mayor Steve Kay said one alternative to the current Planning Commission proposal is to bring in around 5000 acres and let market forces determine what, when, and how it will be developed. Council is expected to vote on the goals and objectives in June.

Former Vice Mayor Steve Kay speaks at the May 9 Committee of the Whole meeting. (LexTV screenshot)

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Top photo: Jim Host-College Sports Marketing and Production Pioneer-Offers Public Comment to the Lexington Council. (Stu Johnson for WEKU)

Republished with permission from WEKU.