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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study Lexington, Kentucky Final Report June 2013

Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government (LFUCG)


Acknowledgements Strand Associates, Inc.速, MKSK, LandStory, Cultural Resource Analysts, Inc., Third Rock Consultants, LLC, EHI Consultants, and Public Art Consultants Todd Bressi and Stacy Levy would like to convey our many thanks and appreciation to those individuals who contributed their time, knowledge and support in helping shape the development of this Distillery District Feasibility Study.

Mayor Honorable Jim Gray

Consultant Team Strand Associates, Inc.速 MKSK LandStory Cultural Resource Analysts, Inc. Third Rock Consultants, LLC EHI Consultants Todd Bressi/Stacy Levy -Public Art

City Council Linda Gorton, Vice Mayor Chuck Ellinger, At-Large Steve Kay, At-Large Chris Ford, District 1 Shevawn Akers, District 2 Diane Lawless, District 3 Julian Beard, District 4 Bill Farmer, Jr., District 5 Kevin Stinnett, District 6 Jennifer Scutchfield, District 7 George Myers, District 8 Jennifer Mossotti, District 9 Harry Clarke, District 10 Peggy Henson, District 11 Ed Lane, District 12 Tom Blues (Former Councilman)

LFUCG Project Management Bob Bayert, P.E., Project Manager

Technical Advisory Committee Stakeholder Committee Public Participants Survey Respondents

Special thanks to all citizens, area property owners, and design workshop particpants.

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

James E. Pepper Distillery -1936


Table of Contents EXECUTIVE SUMMARY • Executive Summary

Page ..................................................................................................................................................................................................................................4-5

INTRODUCTION • • • • •

Purpose and Intent Area of Study Process Summary Public Involvement Summary Goals and Objectives

......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................6 ......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................6 ......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................6 ......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................6 ......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................6

PHYSICAL CONDITIONS INVESTIGATION AND SITE ANALYSIS • • • • • • •

Existing Land Use Existing Physical Conditions Architectural Quality Summary of Environmental Process Neighborhoods Existing Corridor Analysis and Findings

......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................7 ......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................7 ......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................7 ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................12 ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................22 ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................22 ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................24

DISTILLERY DISTRICT PUBLIC IMPROVEMENTS PROGRAM • • • • • •

Defining Principles Alternatives Analysis Additional Improvement Considerations Stream Enhancements Public Space Public Art

....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................33 ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................41 ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................46 ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................47 ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................48 ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................49

RECOMMENDATIONS AND IMPLEMENTATION STRATEGIES • • • •

Recommended Plan Considerations for Implementation Funding Phasing and Implementation Strategy

....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................55 ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................58 ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................59 ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................59

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Executive Summary The Distillery District Improvements Program offers a unique opportunity for Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government (LFUCG) to cost-effectively reinvest in an underutilized area of the City that possesses many unique attributes and hidden community assets. This often overlooked corridor supported Lexington’s early industrial beginnings and is home to adjacent neighborhoods, such as Irishtown and Melrose-Oak Park, that bring relevant history that should not be lost or forgotten. The Executive Summary provides a brief overview that highlights the study findings while summarizing key recommendations for LFUCG to consider in supporting both short-term and long-term needs of the Distillery District Tax Increment Financing (TIF) initiative.

Area of Study The total length of the Manchester Street corridor through the project area is just less than one mile and consists of two distinct sections (East District and West District) created by the Norfolk Southern (NS) rail line, which forms a very defining physical divide. The study area includes properties located along the corridor and considers adjacent neighborhoods in respecting the relative sensitivities and concerns from the future corridor redevelopment initiative.

Summary of Corridor Analysis From its unheralded beginnings in the late 1700s to its industrial growth in the 1800s and 1900s, the Manchester Street corridor has experienced considerable change throughout its history. Iconic structures such as the Old Tarr and Pepper Distilleries still remain along with the first vestige of Town Branch Creek located downstream of the Central Business District. However, through this change, public investment in essential infrastructure has not kept pace, which in-turn has taken its toll on the corridor through a lack of tangible redevelopment and enhancement of existing building stock. Once vibrant neighborhoods that flanked the corridor have also deteriorated as other areas of the City have seen growth and prosperity.

Defining Principles

Recommended Plan

Phasing and Implementation Strategy

The development of the proposed initial trail, roadway, and streetscape improvements is an important inducement to private sector developers, business interests, and investors alike. The expectation that public investment can incentivize subsequent private investment is supported by a multitude of local and regional examples where basic services and amenities already exist and other barriers, risks, and disincentives to private investment can be overcome without further public participation. The ultimate restoration and repair of the Manchester Street Corridor, Town Branch Creek, and the neighborhoods that define the Distillery District will occur through an evolving series of public and private initiatives that shape the character and quality of the District’s public realm and provide required improvements, services, and amenities over many years.

The Recommended Plan for implementation is Alternative No. 3 - Manchester Street and Pepper Trail as shown on the following page. The benefits of this alternative include high visibility of the trail in the commercial East District area, active engagement with Town Branch Creek in the West District through Pepper Distillery, and direct connectivity to both Irishtown and MelroseOak Park neighborhoods. For a more detailed discussion of the Recommended Plan and related implementation support stategies, please turn to page 55.

Initially, LFUCG’s role can be best served by providing solutions to challenging questions that deter private sector investment and entrepreneurship. The Priority Early Action Items outlined below represent needs that go beyond the normal scope of the private sector due in large part to their complexity resulting from interrelationships with the public realm. The Action Items have been listed individually for ease of understanding; however, they are collectively intertwined and should be considered together as one moving forward. Their interrelationships and importance are further illustrated as follows: • Street/Trail Preliminary Plan – Supports identification of Phase 1 implementation – Aids utility companies in planning for future facilities. – Guides planning for interim redevelopment initiatives. • FEMA Floodplain Update – Supports analysis of stream restoration alternatives. – Informs placement decisions for West District sewer system. – Determines adequacy of existing and proposed bridges. • Utility Service (Partnering Initiative) – Outlines coordination required with public improvements. – Elevates understanding of cost and accountability for upgrades. – Supports seamless final design for roadway corridor. • Sanitary Sewer Service (Implementation Plan) – Melds Remedial Measures plan with corridor improvements. – Unifies West District Sewer Solution with street/trail plan. – Resolves conflicts with stream revitalization planning. • Stream Revitalization (Watershed-Based Plan) – Outlines potential strategies to reduce flooding. – Informs public improvement opportunities for Town Branch. – Provides basis for opening lower reach of culvert systems.

The defining principles identified with this study are intended to inform future decisions and guide public policy regarding current and future investment. They were developed as a result of public comments and advisory committee involvement. These principles are reflected within a conceptual framework plan that supports the TIF applicant’s desired program of land uses while establishing guidelines for a future network of public infrastructure, neighborhood parks, and open space that respond to the aspirations of area residents and comments received from local stakeholders and the general public. These guiding principles were condensed into five defining goals and objectives for the Distillery District Improvements Program as follows: 1. Adopt infrastructure strategies that are context and neighborhood-sensitive. 2. Leverage public investment for restorative potential. 3. Enhance the local environment through sustainable planning and design strategies. 4. Promote transit-oriented complete streets for a more compact and walkable corridor. 5. Use collaborative approach to build consensus for improvements to the public realm.

In assessing the causes and potential solutions, attention to Quality of Place holds the key to revitalization of this once contributing area of the City. As evidenced by the evaluations and findings of this study, many infrastructure-related deficiencies contribute directly to the current conditions that exist within the District from drainage and sewerage facilities to walkable pedestrian-friendly streets. The analysis of the existing corridor provides clear evidence that investment in public infrastructure is a fundamental need with or without the District Initiative. Furthermore, the scale and complexity of the many challenges identified herein support the public/private partnership approach envisioned by the TIF District infrastructure modernization strategy.

Considerations for Implementation The Feasibility Study evaluation has outlined a variety of infrastructure-related needs to support the intended Distillery District Program. Through this evaluation, important considerations were also identified that add complexity to the approach for implementation of major capital roadway and trail improvements. These include: • Nonconforming interim redevelopment activity. • Extreme floodplain encumbrance in the West District. • Required rehabilitation and upgrades for public utility services. • Limited availability of sewer service in West District. • Pending consent decree trunk sewer remedial measures. • Need for unified approach to stream revitalization. • Corridor character negatively impacted by truck traffic. • Lack of functional civic space. • Advanced deterioration of historic Pepper Distillery Buildings. • Outreach with neighborhoods and need for stabilization efforts. • Requirements for easements and property acquisition. The list of items noted above is not intended to be all-inclusive, but instead a list that is representative of the unique challenges the Distillery District faces. Experience suggests that many of these issues extend well beyond the normal purview of the private sector. As such, leadership in addressing these challenges should be carefully considered by LFUCG in formulating its strategy to adequately support the TIF District initiative.

Infrastructure Element

Milestone 1

Milestone 2

Establish MOA Initiate 30% Design for with Developer(s) Street/Trail Preliminary Plan Preferred Street/Trail for Targeted Public Alternative Investment

Distillery District Conceptual Framework Plan “Birds Eye View”

Perform Updated Floodplain Analysis of Stream

FEMA Floodplain Update

Complete Town Branch Watershed Hydrologic Study

Utility Service

Facilitate Needs Initiate Utility Company Assessment and Summit and Establish Define Upgrade Partnering Relationship Requirements

Sanitary Sewer Service

Authorize Study of Sewerability Alternatives

Stream Revitalization

Recognizing investment in implementation is an important objective for the District, the collective product of these tasks will bring added confidence in direction with the private sector, while serving as a checkpoint for LFUCG to assess how best to move forward with subsequent involvement. While certain priority items may take up to 24 months to fully complete, preliminary feedback should be evident in all priority areas within 9 to 12 months to help guide investment of remaining initial project funding. Milestone 3

Request Construction Align Developer(s) Funding and Pursue Early Initiatives with Phase I Action Items to Improve Improvements Program Corridor Character

Projected Duration

6-9 mo.

Estimated Budget

$200,000

Request FEMA Review and Concurrence

Floodplain Map Revision/Increase 18-24 mo. Redevelopment Potential in West District

Formalize MOAs for Service Upgrades/ Improvements

Utility Companies Commitment to Service Improvements

9-12 mo.

$25,000

Implementation Plan for Sewer Service

6-9 mo.

$25,000

Commission Design for Stream Restoration

18-24 mo.

$175,000

Integrate Adopt Implementation Recommendations with Cost Sharing Plan with Remedial Measures Developer(s) Program Pursue Funding Outline Program of Authorize Watershed Opportunities for Improvements to Town Based Plan to Support Targeted Stream Branch Revitalization Initiative Improvements

Priority Early Action Item Recommendations

4

Objective

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

$400,000


Alternative No. 3 - Manchester Street and Pepper Trail (Recommended Plan)

4 1 1

4

4

2 1 2 3

Legend - Town Branch Creek Trail

Typical Section

Roadway Improvements Streetscape

Evaluation Scale

East District Description Roadway Streetscape Off-Road Trail Railroad Stream Restoration Env. Remediation ROW Acquistion Public Art/Amenity

Public Pedestrian & Bicycle Trail Improvements Private Pedestrian & Bicycle Trail Improvements Town Branch Creek Private Sidewalk for Outside Cafes Key Notes: 1 Significant Property Acquistion Required 2 Further Environmental Investigation Required 3 Provides Creek/Trail Interaction 4 Provides Trail Connection to Neighborhood

Evaluation Criteria

Opinion of Probable Cost

Less

QTY 2,130 2,050 0 85 0 1 0 1

Unit Cost $ 1,015 $ 710 $ 250 $ 500 $ $ 50,000 $ $ 300,000

Total Cost $ 2,161,950 $ 1,455,500 $ $ 42,500 $ $ 50,000 $ $ 300,000

Description Roadway Streetscape Off-Road Trail Railroad Stream Restoration Env. Remediation ROW Acquisition Public Art/Amenity

5

More

Implementable • Cost • Land Acquisition • Environmental Impacts

Quality of Life/Quality of Place • Integration of Creek and Trail • Safety

West District Existing

1

QTY 3,240 2,920 1,450 120 1,200 2 1 1

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Unit Cost 1,285 720 400 1,570 250 125,000 170,000 220,000

Subtotal Professional Services Contingency Total

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Total Cost 4,163,400 2,102,400 580,000 188,400 300,000 250,000 170,000 220,000

• Neighborhood/Cultural Sensitivity

Catalytic Impact • Public Support • Other Initiatives • Market Need

$ 11,984,150 $ 1,797,700 $ 2,396,900 $ 16,178,750

Proposed

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

5


Introduction The Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government (LFUCG) comissioned the Strand Team to complete a feasibility study for streetscape and trail improvements between Oliver Lewis Way and Forbes Road along the Manchester Street Corridor. The resulting program outlined through this study is intended to help support revitalization efforts for the corridor as part of the larger Lexington Distillery District (District) initiative. The study area is located within downtown Lexington, Kentucky, near its early beginnings at McConnell Springs and is steeped in history with a number of historical landmarks located along Town Branch Creek on which Lexington was originally settled. This area also offers a rich history of the City’s industrial beginnings that includes a currently active rail yard and the former James E. Pepper Distillery, which is slated for redevelopment as part of the Distillery District Revitalization initiative.

Purpose and Intent The Lexington Distillery District project is a visionary initiative proposed by developer Barry McNees to redevelop the once burgeoning Manchester Street Corridor into a vibrant mixed-use district. To help support this initiative, the developer and LFUCG have jointly proposed a Tax Increment Financing (TIF) District to help fund certain elements of required public infrastructure improvements. The TIF district funding mechanism allows the taxing jurisdiction to pay for public improvements from future additional tax revenues the district generates as a result of the improvements. In October 2009, the Commonwealth of Kentucky approved the District TIF request, which led to initiation of this study. In support of the developer’s redevelopment initiative, LFUCG also approved a $2.2 million bond issue in December 2009 for public infrastructure improvements within the District to help serve as a stimulus. The purpose of this feasibility study is to aid LFUCG in better understanding the scope of required public improvements so that informed planning decisions can be made regarding the City’s proposed investment in the corridor. The recommendations of this feasibility study are guided by the knowledge and opinions of LFUCG staff, outside agencies, and a wide range of public and private stakeholders. This initiative is intended to help guide LFUCG in making capital investment decisions that are aligned with the City’s goal to maximize its return on investment. In addition, the plan is intended to achieve the following objectives: • Implement a study approach that supports the potential for future federal funding. • Enhance the District connectivity while remaining sensitive to neighborhood concerns.

• Evaluate alternative alignments and typical sections for roadway and trail improvements • Provide an overall opinion of probable cost to help in evaluating alternatives. • Coordinate study recommendations with the adjacent Rupp Arena and Arts and Entertainment District findings. • Determine a recommended alternative with phasing and implementation strategy. • Establish public infrastructure framework that supports privatesector investment along the corridor.

Area of Study The total corridor length of the project area is just less than one mile and consists of two distinct sections created by the major north/south Norfolk Southern (NS) rail line, which forms a very defining physical divide: • East District: An area approximately 2,125 feet from the intersection of Oliver Lewis Way to the Norfolk Southern railroad overpass on Manchester Street. • West District: An area approximately 2,950 feet from the Norfolk Southern railroad overpass on Manchester Street to beyond the Pepper Distillery property on Manchester Street to South Forbes Road. The study area includes properties located along the corridor and considers adjacent neighborhoods in respecting the relative sensitivities and concerns from the future corridor redevelopment initiative. The current width of the right-of-way for Manchester Street varies along the corridor, with the majority of the right-of-way being less than 50 feet.

Process Summary The planning process for the Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program (LDDIP) Feasibility Study involved a comprehensive approach with input gathered from a number of public meetings, stakeholders, and related research over a twoyear period. The project included four major phases: • Planning Services As part of the planning services, a tailored scope was developed to meet the feasibility study goals and objectives. Planning related services also included facilitation of project information sessions with key permitting and potential funding agencies. • Site Inventory, Research, and Analysis The Strand Team collected existing information relative to the study area including current aerial photography, topography, property ownership, utilities, proposed development plans, and future trail improvement plans. Meetings with key stakeholders including key developers, property owners, and utility representatives were held to learn about future planned improvements and to obtain input related to the planning, design, and implementation of the LDDIP. Multiple site visits allowed the planning team to gather information and research the corridor to gain a greater understanding of the existing physical conditions along with site constraints and opportunities.

• Alternatives Analysis The site inventory, research, and analysis helped in the study and development of various alternative alignments and typical sections for Manchester Street and the Town Branch Trail. These alternatives considered corridor opportunities while being sensitive to other issues and concerns identified through the structured outreach initiative. The alternatives were reviewed at a public meeting and a decision-making matrix was developed to evaluate the options and assist with selection of a preferred plan for implementation. • Recommendations and Implementation Strategies A project of the scale and complexity as the Distillery District Public Improvements Program includes many overlapping considerations between both the public and private sectors. To foster the cooperative dialogue needed to address these common interests, recommendations and implementation strategies are outlined to help move the public infrastructure program forward in a logical fashion that compliments each party’s respective objectives. Priority Early Action items were outlined with various support strategies for both public infrastructure and private development interests.

Public Involvement Summary Effective communication between the project team, LFUCG staff, and various stakeholder groups was essential for this feasibility study to develop in an organized manner and meet the wide range of concerns represented by various interests. Working with the adjacent business owners and area residents was deemed a critical and vital component to this planning initiative. A comprehensive public involvement approach was planned to gain feedback from the following traditional and nontraditional stakeholders as design alternatives were explored, including: • Neighborhood Group Meetings Separate project information meetings were held in the Irishtown, Melrose-Oak Park, and Speigle Heights neighborhoods. These ose meetings were conducted to address the needs of those residents most directly affected by the redevelopment initiative. The neighborhood groups addressed current concerns within their community and the Manchester corridor in general, concerns about the proposed development, and hopes for what redevelopment could mean to the area. • Other Corridor Stakeholder Meetings In addition to the adjacent neighborhood groups, there are several other key corridor stakeholders. These stakeholders include groups such as the developer, utility companies, RJ Corman Railroad Company, and Vulcan Materials. The consultant team met with these stakeholders to understand their concerns and future plans.

• Public Workshops Workshops were conducted that incorporated a visioning component including activities based on audience involvement to actively engage them in the process. Topics included opportunities and constraints as well as sustainable design strategies. Alternatives were presented at a public meeting with opportunity for feedback. Surveys were also used to facilitate input. • Advisory/Technical Committee Meetings Combined meetings with a stakeholder committee and city advisory staff were held to help keep participants informed of progress and to obtain feedback. The lines of communication were kept open with both groups throughout the study duration. These meetings included LFUCG staff and representatives of organizations with an interest in the District, such as LexArts, Rupp Arena, and Arts and Entertainment District Team, the Downtown Development Authority, and others.

Goals and Objectives In response to feedback generated through the public involvement and community outreach initiative, a number of guiding principles were identified to help focus the approach to alternatives development, analysis, and recommendations for implementation. These principles were condensed into five defining goals and objectives for the Distillery District Public Improvements Program as follows: 1. Adopt infrastructure strategies that are context and neighborhood-sensitive. 2. Leverage public investment for restorative potential. 3. Enhance the local environment through sustainable planning and design strategies. 4. Promote transit-oriented complete streets for a more compact and walkable corridor. 5. Use collaborative approach to build consensus for improvements to the public realm.

Railroad Underpass Improvements Enhance Accessibility Screening or Eliminating Existing Aerial Sanitary Crossings Improve District Aesthetics

Trail/Stream Integration Opportunities Enhance Water Resources Design Vernacular Vernaculaar Helps Brand The Distri District Creative Design esign Elements Promote Gathering IIn n Public Spaces

Legend Exa h Example Of Trail Integration With Outdoor Space and Roadway Ou Elements Ele

Manchester Street Corridor Proposed Town Branch Trail Alternatives – Draft Town Branch Future Versailles Trail – Trail Master Plan Line 12-10-10 Under Evaluation Floodway – 2008 FIRM Map Gateway Opportunities

6

Vine Street Promenade Highlights Potential Off-Road Path

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

Relocation Alternatives for KU Transmission Line Critical to Project Cost

“Fill the Gap!” Vision Provides Opportunities To Link Downtown With The Distillery District


Physical Conditions Investigation and Site Analysis Existing Land Use

Proposed Future Land Uses

The Existing Land Use exhibit on the following page depicts current use designations in and around the study area.

Current development plans have proposed a variety of mixeduse commercial and residential uses along both segments of the corridor.

railway lines have resulted in the loss of nearly all the natural floodplains, native soils, and original surface and subsurface drainage patterns.

East Segment The majority of parcels along the eastern segment of the Manchester Street Corridor study area are currently classified as Heavy Industrial and Light Industrial. The north side of Manchester Street is dominated by an automotive impound and storage lot and the former Old Tarr Distillery site, which is currently occupied by Buster’s night club and artist studios. The south side of the street is characterized by smaller industrial and commercial parcels including a biological testing laboratory, pet daycare facility, and small neighborhood convenience store. The Irishtown Neighborhood is composed almost entirely of singleand multifamily parcels extending south to the Versailles Road right-of-way.

West Segment The west segment of the corridor is dominated by Vulcan Materials, the City’s Recycling Center, and the historic Pepper Distillery. Bulk material processing, storage, and warehouse facilities can be found along both sides of the street. Parcel depths along the north side limit the commercial potential except where depths become greater at the railway overpass and Forbes Road intersection. The Melrose-Oak Park Neighborhood is composed almost entirely of single-family residential parcels extending north from the RJ Corman/CSX railroad right-of-way to West Main Street. Speigle Heights subdivision is to the south, but it is separated from the District by the RJ Corman Versailles rail line.

Historic Land Use From its meager beginning in the late 1700s to the bustling factories of the 1800s and 1900s, the development along Manchester Street is but a brief history of industrial growth in Lexington as a whole. The historic land uses along the East District began with a woolen factory, a paper mill, and company housing for workers on 40 acres of land. This area was named the Town of Manchester by the founders of the factory, the Prentiss Brothers. Over time, European Americans and European immigrants settled in the area once known as Manchester and people began referring to the area as Irishtown. The historic land use remained industrial; however, the uses transitioned from the factory, to a distillery, to a tobacco warehouse, to stock yards/meat packing, and oil and lumber trades. The historic land uses along the West District began as a stockade. The area then transitioned to a gunpowder mill before becoming a distillery. For more information on historic land uses, see the Historic Context section.

Existing Residence - Typical of Manchester Street Corridor Distillery District Preliminary Development Plan Degraded Portion of Town Branch Creek

Existing Physical Conditions The physical and ecological character of the Distillery District has undergone constant and dramatic change from the time of the City’s early establishment. These changes have resulted in a variety of adverse conditions that impact the character and condition of the study corridor.

Slopes Channelization and earthwork associated with streets and rail lines have created physical barriers to vehicular and pedestrian access to the extent that Thompson Road and De Roode Street provide the only north-south linkages to Manchester Street between Oliver Lewis Way and Forbes Road.

Floodplain The Town Branch tributary to Elkhorn Creek is a major drainage course that has significantly influenced the development of Lexington since its early beginning in the late 1700s. As the City expanded as an early settlement, this important water source served many purposes including supporting the various industries that grew and thrived along its banks. Since those early days, most of the historic Town Branch Creek has been enclosed through a series of culvert systems extending upstream from Rupp Arena to its headwaters beyond what is now Midland Avenue. The contributing watershed for Town Branch Creek located upstream of the NS Railway crossing at Manchester Street comprises some 5.3 square miles of almost entirely developed urban area representing most of Lexington’s Downtown Urban Core. This major watershed contributes significant urban runoff that has, over time, severely degraded the character and quality of this water resource. The result of this collective impact is manifested in a significant regulatory floodplain that requires careful attention with proposed improvements that may be within or in close proximity to this area. The effects of change may be most evident in the current state of the Town Branch Creek where physical changes, channelization, and the impacts of upland development have modified what was once an ecologically diverse riparian corridor into a highly urbanized drainage way and floodplain. Progressive filling, site development, and the construction of roads and

Vegetation While a remnant woodland and substantial tree canopy can be found along the south side of Town Branch Creek along the Pepper Distillery site, the history of disturbance and empirical evidence suggest that most if not all of the original woodland and riparian vegetation has been lost.

Architectural Quality The Old Tarr and Pepper Distilleries are proposed to become the anchors for the adaptive reuse and revitalization of the Manchester Corridor. The original remaining buildings of each property are in various stages of repair. The Old Tarr Distillery Warehouse is actively used today. Most of the Pepper Distillery buildings appear to have good prospects for adaptive reuse provided that structural deficiencies are correctable and that stabilization measures are not deferred beyond reasonable time frames. The distilling plant building appears to have significant structural failures in the building shell and roof that could threaten its viability for salvage and adaptive re-use.

Former Manchester Community Center (now Dog Town)

The resulting loss of most of the prior building inventory along the south side of Manchester Street between the railroad overpass and Oliver Lewis Way has resulted in a poorly defined street edge and unappealing streetscape character.

The James McConnell House, the former Manchester Community Center, and a 1920s-era brick building that housed the West End Mission make up the balance of the corridor’s historic building inventory immediately adjacent to the proposed project. Although a few older homes are known to exist along the corridor, modifications to their exteriors has diminished the relevant architectural significance.

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

7


Existing Land Use - Historic Distilleries James E. Pepper Distillery

2

W.M. Tarr Distillery

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Existing Physical Features

Lexington Cemeter y

Calvar y Cemeter y

Henton Rd.

C ly d e S t.

Wil ton Av e.

Main

St.

1

1

Grade-separated roadway and rail corridors present physical barriers within the district and between surrounding neighborhoods. Central rail overpass defines east and west sides of the District.

2

East section of stream corridor is relocated from original route of Town Branch Creek, is heavily urbanized with steep embankments and narrow riparian zone.

3

West section of stream corridor follows original route of the Town Branch Creek and has a combination of wider embankments and intermittent retaining walls. Wider riparian zone contains more mature tree canopy.

4

Floodplain boundary encompasses the majority of the Manchester Street corridor in west district. Floodplain boundary is less restrictive in east district.

5

Vulcan Materials/ATS Construction. Active rock quarry and asphalt supply plant in close proximity.

6

Pyramid Park: Public green space park fronting on Manchester Street framed by elevated rail corridor with trail connection to Driscoll Street.

7

Thompson Park: Neighborhood park and playground.

LFUCG Recycling Center

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Vulcan Materials Company

W.M. Tar r Distiller y

Per ry St.

War ehouses

RJ Cor man Rail Yar d

Driscoll St.

T hompson Rd. Par k 7

L ig g e tt S t.

Thompson Rd.

Te x a c o R d.

Mature Woodland

Scrub Understory

Treeline Hedge

Mown Lawn

Retaining Walls

>20% slopes

Floodway

10-20% slopes

100 yr. FEMA Floodplain de

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500 yr. FEMA Floodplain

t.

100’ 200’

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

S Severely Sloped Stream Banks G Gently Sloped Stream Banks 400’ north

9


Existing Floodplain

Lexington Cemeter y

1 East section of stream corridor is relocated from

Calvar y Cemeter y

Henton Rd.

C ly d e S t.

Wil ton Av e.

Main

original route of Town Branch Creek and is heavily urbanized with steep embankments and a narrow riparian zone. St.

2 West section of stream corridor follows

original route of Town Branch Creek and has a combination of wider embankments and intermittent retaining walls. Wider riparian zone contains more mature tree canopy. 3 Floodplain boundary encompasses the majority of

the Manchester Street corridor in west district. Floodplain boundary is less restrictive in east district. LFUCG Recycling Center

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Channelized stream conditions where Town Branch crosses below Manchester St. and the railroad

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War ehouses

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Driscoll St.

T hompson Rd. Par k

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500 yr. FEMA Floodplain oo

de

S Severely Sloped Stream Banks S

Gently Sloped Stream Banks Retaining Walls

t.

100’ 200’

400’ north

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Existing Vegetation

Lexington Cemeter y

Calvar y Cemeter y

Henton Rd.

C ly d e S t.

Wil ton Av e.

Main

1 East section of stream corridor is relocated from

original route of Town Branch Creek and is heavily urbanized with steep embankments and a narrow riparian zone. St.

2 West section of stream corridor follows

original route of Town Branch Creek and has a combination of wider embankments and intermittent retaining walls. Wider riparian zone contains more mature tree canopy. 3 Pyramid Park: Public green space park fronting on

Manchester Street framed by elevated rail corridor with trail connection to Driscoll Street.

W.M. Tar r Distiller y

1 Pyr amid Pa r k 3

2

Speig le Heights Pa r k

Scrub vegetation dominates the viewshed along Manchester St.

Edmond St.

Sp e St

St

on

.

St .

Ja

ne

Scrub understory is indicative of the steep slopes along the rail corridor

e.

Legend

.

n

us

so

rg

rt

gl

be

Fe

v yA e l l Va

ei

Ro

St. son r e And

Manchester St.

Pine St.

r S t.

Will ard St.

M a n c h e s te

James E. Pepper Distiller y

Vulcan Materials Company

playground.

Oliver Lewis Way

LFUCG Recycling Center

Per ry St.

War ehouses

4 Thompson Park: Neighborhood park and

RJ Cor man Rail Yar d

Driscoll St.

T hompson Rd. Par k 4

L ig g e tt S t.

Thompson Rd.

Te x a c o R d.

. St

Ve

a rs

ill

es

Rd

.

Mature Woodland D

e

Treeline Hedge R

oo

Scrub Understory de

S

Mown Lawn

t.

Town Branch Creek 0’

100’ 200’

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

400’ north

11


Existing Slopes

Lexington Cemeter y

1 Grade-separated roadway and rail corridors

Calvar y Cemeter y

Henton Rd.

C ly d e S t.

Wil ton Av e.

Main

present physical barriers within the District and between surrounding neighborhoods. Central rail overpass defines east and west sides of the District.

St.

2 The East section of the Town Branch Creek

is relocated from original route and is heavily urbanized with steep embankments and narrow riparian zone.

1

3 West section of the Town Branch Creek follows

the original route and has more shallow side slopes and intermittent retaining walls. Wider riparian zone contains more mature tree canopy.

LFUCG Recycling Center

4 Vulcan Materials/ATS Construction. Active rock

quarry with existing surface and subsurface mining and asphalt and concrete supply plant in close proximity. W.M. Tar r Distiller y

2

James E. Pepper Distiller y 3 1

Manchester St.

Oliver Lewis Way

Pyr amid Pa r k

Pine St.

r S t.

Will ard St.

M a n c h e s te

Per ry St.

War ehouses

RJ Cor man Rail Yar d

Driscoll St.

T hompson Rd. Par k

L ig g e tt S t.

Thompson Rd.

Te x a c o R d.

Irishtown Edmond St.

1

Sp ei

ey

St

on

.

St .

Ja

ne

A

. ve

Central rail overpass defines a wide section of the District

1

.

n

St

so

us

ll Va

e

rt

gl

be

rg

4

St.

Fe

Vulcan Materials Company

on

Ro

A

rs nde

. St

Speig le Heights 1

Ve

r

i sa

lle

s

Rd

.

1

Legend D

e

Retaining Walls R

oo

de

>20% slopes S

10-20% slopes

t.

Town Branch Creek 0’

12

100’ 200’

400’ north

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

Steep slopes and the rail corridor divide the District from surrounding neighborhoods


Summary of Environmental Process The environmental analysis to support the alternatives evaluation was implemented as a two-phased process with an initial overview followed by targeted baseline assessments. The overview was completed to provide guidance to the project team and LFUCG on where further efforts would be best spent and to provide a good understanding of general corridor environmental concerns. The second step was to complete supplemental environmental evaluations, which included a Cultural Historic and Archaeological Baseline Survey and Aquatic and Terrestrial Baseline Assessment of Town Branch Creek.

Area of Potential Effect (Project Area) For purposes of the environmental analysis, Areas of Potential Effect were identified in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process to guide relevant field investigations and assessments. This Project Area limit is referred to as Project Area hereinafter with regard to the environmental analysis.

Initial Environmental Review As a component of the feasibility study, an environmental review was conducted in support of the LDDIP. The goal of the effort is to understand potential environmental impacts of the project and maintain compliance with NEPA procedures. Adherence to the NEPA process will support future federal funding for the project. The proposed project is comprised of two primary parts: (1) streetscape improvements to Manchester Street and (2) extension of the Town Branch Trail between Oliver Lewis Way and South Forbes Road. In addition, environmental resources were reviewed within the larger Project Area as noted in the following exhibits: Aquatic and Terrestrial, Hazardous Materials, and Socioeconomic sites. The larger project area is associated with secondary and cumulative impacts related to the development of the proposed Distillery District. This initial environmental review presents an overview of the ecological, hazardous materials, and socioeconomic conditions and constraints within the project area and establishes a foundation to support future analysis. It should be noted that modeling for air quality and traffic noise has not been conducted. A general discussion of air quality and traffic noise is therefore included. Cultural resources are being examined and are an equally important component of the NEPA process. This component may require significant coordination with the State Historic Preservation Office and other stakeholders to maintain eligibility for federal funding. More detailed assessments of each area of environmental consideration are planned as a subsequent phase of the feasibility study.

Air Quality Lexington/Fayette County, Kentucky, is part of the Bluegrass Intrastate Air Quality Control Region. The county is currently

designated in attainment for all transportation-related air pollutants. The proposed project is not anticipated to adversely impact air quality. The approximately 1-mile project corridor is located in a predominantly urban/industrial area. Because future traffic projections will not exceed 80,000 average daily traffic (ADT), a full air quality analysis including carbon monoxide modeling is not anticipated. An abbreviated air quality analysis would require traffic data (ADT for each alternative scenario) to determine anticipated impacts resulting from the proposed project. Qualitative evaluation of mobile source pollutants would be performed, including carbon monoxide, lead, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, particulate matter, sulfur dioxide, and mobile source air toxins. Fayette County is in attainment for ozone and particulate matter, thus the air quality analysis would not require inclusion of the PM-2.5 Checklist or the 8-hour ozone designation and attainment status discussion. Based on the current and anticipated traffic volumes of the project area (less than 80,000 ADT), it is estimated that current and future concentrations of transportation-related air pollutants will not exceed the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) established by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA). The emissions of air pollutants related to this project are not expected to have a negative impact on the ambient air quality nor affect the attainment status of Fayette County. Because the project is currently locally funded, it is not listed in the Statewide Transportation Improvement Program, Fiscal Years 2011-2014.

Traffic Noise Traffic noise modeling was not conducted for this overview. The project corridor contains sensitive noise receivers worth noting. Three residential communities (Irishtown, Speigle Heights, and Melrose-Oak Park) are located along the corridor. The Southend Park neighborhood is adjacent to Irishtown and has experienced “cut-through” traffic from South Broadway to Manchester Street for many years. This neighborhood is currently being redeveloped. Calvary Cemetery is located just north of the corridor, although across the RJ Corman Railroad tracks from Manchester Street. These sensitive receiver locations might experience elevated noise levels because of increased traffic from proposed projects within the Distillery District as compared to existing conditions. According to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Policy, Procedures for Abatement of Highway Traffic Noise and Construction Noise, contained in 23 CFR 772, traffic noise impacts occur when the predicted traffic noise levels approach (are within 1 decibel on the A-weighted scale [dBA]) or exceed the established Noise Abatement Criteria (NAC). The policy states traffic noise impacts also occur when the predicted traffic noise levels for the Build scenario substantially exceed existing noise levels (increase beyond Existing levels by 10 dBA or

more). The FHWA exterior NAC for institutional and residential facilities is 67.0 dBA. The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet’s (KYTC) Noise Abatement Policy (February 2000) incorporates FHWA procedures and NAC contained in 23 CFR 772. KYTC policy also includes, among others, the following definitions and criteria: • A “noise increase” is defined as the difference in noise levels between the “Build and “No-build” alternatives in the design year. • A project does not “appreciably alter” future noise levels if the noise increase is not greater than 3 dBA. • Noise barrier construction will generally not be considered feasible along existing roadways where the proposed project does not appreciably alter future noise levels. • KYTC will consider noise abatement measures as appropriate if the noise level predicted for the design year approaches (within 1 dBA) or exceeds the NAC for the land use category affected and/or the noise level increase predicted for the design year is 10 dBA or more greater than the measured existing noise level (a substantial exceedance).

Steep Stream Banks with Narrow Riparian Zone Dominated by Asian Bush Honeysuckle

With the implementation of this project, traffic noise levels are not expected to increase substantially from Existing to Build conditions. If federal funding is sought in the future, traffic noise modeling may be required to determine noise increases.

Ecology Diverse aquatic and terrestrial features are scarce in this highly urbanized area and are shown on page 14. Aquatic resources are restricted to Town Branch Creek and McConnell Springs. The effects of the highly urbanized watershed on the perennial Town Branch Creek are evident. The stream is a 303(d) listed stream for not supporting the designated warm water uses of primary contact recreation (swimming) and warm water aquatic habitat use (aquatic life). The upper reaches of the stream flow through culverts beneath Lexington before surfacing approximately 100 yards southeast of Oliver Lewis Way. Northwest of Oliver Lewis Way, the stream meanders through an industrial area, which in most sections has reduced the riparian zone to 10 feet in width or less. Two primary exceptions are a 700-yard section of Town Branch Creek from the point at which it crosses west of Manchester Street at the railroad bridge to the point at which it crosses back to the north side of Manchester Street near Pine Mountain Lumber, and a 500-yard section between Jimmie Campbell Drive and Forbes Road. The riparian zone of the stream along this section is wider (or has the potential to be made wider) and the canopy is more mature. While the dominant canopy species along the stream is bush honeysuckle (Lonicera mackii), the canopy along this section is more diverse and includes mature slippery elm (Ulmus rubra), sycamore (Platanus occidentalis), silver maple (Acer saccharinum), and black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia).

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

Asian Bush Honeysuckle with Native Tree Saplings and Exotic Winter Creeper on the Bank of Town Branch

McConnell Springs is located within the project area but outside the Manchester Street streetscape improvements and Town Branch Trail design project footprints. It is a 26-acre nature park pocketed amongst a dense light industrial development area. Aquatic resources within the park include a spring, a pond, a stream, and wetland areas. The park’s large man-made wetland pond is a valuable asset as it was designed to slow and filter surface runoff. McConnell Springs also represents one of the few terrestrial resource assets in the Project Area. The park, in addition to Calvary Cemetery and Lexington Cemetery, contains a diverse mix of mature trees that provide habitat for numerous urban species of birds and mammals. A more detailed assessment of Town Branch Creek within the Project Area was conducted to develop a better understanding of the existing physical conditions and water quality. This assessment considered opportunities that might exist to improve the condition of the creek and its tributaries in the district. This in turn could also support ongoing watershed planning efforts and how those considerations might influence the planning and design components for the District.

13


Underground Storage Tank/Hazardous Materials The object of this assessment was to identify potential conditions that could represent a liability to the project because of the presence of hazardous waste, petroleum products, or associated soil and groundwater contamination. A combination of map review, database review, and pedestrian field survey was used to assess potential hazardous materials sites within the project area. They are shown on page 15. • Database Review Environmental Data Resources, Inc. (EDR) was contacted before the field reconnaissance activities to produce an electronic review of applicable environmental databases. Various state and federal environmental agency databases were reviewed. EDR’s database search resulted in the identification of numerous facilities located in the vicinity of the project corridor. However, only the facilities listed in Table 1 are believed to be of any consequence to the proposed project. Table 1 – Potential Sites of Concern, Hazardous Materials Property

DT Ferrell Trust/ Ferrell’s Car Care ATS Construction Plant # 16/ Central Kentucky Asphalt Great Southern Refinery Bond Management/ Environmental Resources Inc.

Address

Type of Business

1120 Automotive Manchester St repair (active) 1256 Asphalt supply Manchester St plant (active) Texaco & Clyde St

Historic refinery (closed) Unknown (no longer 811 present due to Manchester St improvements to Oliver Lewis Way)

Database (s)

SHWS, UST, SB 193

Contaminant

Petroleum products

SHWS, NPDES, Petroleum FINDS, AIRS, products ICIS Petroleum SHWS products UST, SB 193, RCRANonGen, FINDS

Petroleum products

Fleetcard – 943 Gas station Lexman/Riley Oil Manchester St (active) Company

UST

Petroleum products

Vulcan Construction Materials

UST, AIRS, FTTS/ HIST Petroleum FTTS, FINDS, products NPDES

1280 Quarry (active) Manchester St

Databases: AIRS - Permitted Airs facilities FINDS – Facility Index System FTTS/HIST FTTS – Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act ICIS – Integrated Compliance Information System NPDES – Permitted Wastewater Facilities RCRA-NonGen – Resource Conservation and Recovery Act – Non Generator SB 193 – UST sites with known soil/groundwater contamination SHWS–State Hazardous Waste Sites UST–Underground Storage Tank

• Mapping Review Mapping resources were reviewed at the University of Kentucky Science Library. Additional historic mapping was also reviewed online via the Science Library website (http://libguides.uky.edu/ maps).

14

Historic aerial images were reviewed for the project corridor including the following years: 1937, 1956, 1966, 1973, 1982, and 1990. Additionally, historic topographic mapping for the Lexington West 7.5 minute quadrangle was reviewed for 1950, 1955, 1959, and 1965. As expected for a largely urban area such as Manchester Street, the project corridor appeared developed on all images reviewed. The 1937 image revealed many of the same warehouse and distillery buildings along Manchester Street that are still present today. Numerous residential dwellings were evident along Manchester Street on the 1937 image. The subsequent images reviewed revealed an increase in development with the land use transitioning from residential to more industrial. Most notably, the 1982 and 1990 images showed what appeared to be automotive junk yards located just east and west of the current Manchester Street railroad crossing. The junk yards are not present today; however, the presence of the historic junk yards represents potential environmental conditions. In addition to the aerial images and topographic mapping, Sanborn Fire Insurance mapping was reviewed for 1886, 1890, 1896, 1901, 1907, and 1958. Limited Sanborn coverage is available for the project area with the majority of the mapping focusing on the area between Cox Street and the Manchester Street railroad crossing. Various tobacco warehouses, distilleries, and numerous residential dwellings were identified along Manchester Street. One occupant of particular interest, the Standard Oil Company, was identified just east of the former Cox Street and Manchester Street intersection. Recent road improvements to Oliver Lewis Way have dramatically altered the former location of this parcel. However, the former land use on this parcel does represent a potential environmental condition. Additionally, the 1958 mapping identified a junk yard at the intersection of Manchester and Perry Streets. This former junk yard location also represents a potential environmental condition. • Summary Because of the long history of intense urban and industrial development present throughout the project corridor, the proposed projects can expect to encounter potential environmental conditions. It should be assumed that a general condition of surface soil contamination exists in the entire project area. Plans should not include the use of the existing surface soils in the final grade. Most of the project corridor has also had fill material use to bring the area to its existing grade. The quality and nature of this fill material could also represent environmental conditions. Town Branch Creek and its banks may have a history for use with waste disposal. Once final alternatives are developed, additional research is recommended.

Socioeconomic Review • Land Use Land use immediately adjacent to Town Branch and Manchester Street between Forbes Road and Oliver Lewis Way is almost exclusively industrial. Facilities such as the Vulcan Materials Company, LFUCG Recycling Center, an RJ Corman rail yard, and numerous small auto repair and other businesses are present along Manchester Street. Pyramid Park, a small neighborhood park, is located along the roadway as well, as are the entertainment destinations Buster’s Billiards and Backroom and The Barrel House. C&P Market, a neighborhood convenience store/restaurant, is located near these establishments. Industrial and commercial facilities comprise much of the land use in the project area as a whole; however, land use is more diverse in the overall project area, which includes several neighborhoods, parks, churches, day care facilities, retail establishments, restaurants, and cemeteries. • Communities/Community Features The residential neighborhoods of Speigle Heights, Irishtown, and Melrose-Oak Park are located near Manchester Street in the project area. These neighborhoods are comprised of modest one- or two-family frame or brick homes inhabited by a mix of lower-middle to low-income individuals/families. Within these communities, churches and parks are present. Several community service and outreach centers are located within or near the project area, such as the Salvation Army, Irishtown Baptist Ministries, and the Carver Center. The main office for Lexington’s Community Action Council, which has sites providing social services throughout the county, is located just east of Oliver Lewis Way on High Street. As no roadways will be removed or significantly reconfigured as a result of the project, access to/from these facilities will not change. Direct impacts to these facilities are not anticipated. Improved pedestrian facilities along the Manchester corridor will benefit those who patronize these establishments, as many likely do so on foot.

Executive Order 12898 provides that minority and low-income populations do not bear a disproportionate share of high and adverse human health or environmental impacts by identifying and addressing the impacts a project may have on these populations. Environmental Justice is a potential concern for the project. Melrose-Oak Park, Speigle Heights, Irishtown, and Southend Park neighborhoods contain a high percentage of minority Table 3 – Neighborhood Data

(2007 to 2009 American Community Survey)

Kentucky Fayette County

Hispanic or Latino

CT 9 1

CT 10 2

2.3

5.9

2.4

0.0

Median Household Income

$41,197

$46,874

$16,449

$28,977

Per Capita Income HH Receiving Public Assistance income (%) Median Gross Rent as % of HH Income Median Year Structure Built

$22,284

$27,878

$9,228

$12,006

2.3

1.4

0.6

11.0

28.2

29.3

50.0

23.7

1976

1978

1978

1958

Median Value

$113,100

$155,400

$92,600

$69,200

1

Southend Park Speigel Heights, Irishtown, Melrose-Oak Park Source: US Census, American FactFinder (http://factfinder2.census.gov)

2

and/or low-income residents. Census data indicates that just over half of Speigle Heights and Irishtown residents are minorities, whereas approximately a quarter of Fayette County’s population is comprised of minority residents. Although MelroseOak Park and Southend Park contain a slightly smaller percentage of minority residents than the county average, a large percentage of residents in those neighborhoods rent their homes, indicating incomes are likely lower in these areas. The percentage of individuals who rent their homes is also higher than the county average in Speigle Heights and Irishtown. Table 2 – Neighborhood Data

(2010 Census)

Kentucky

Fayette County

Minority (%)

12.2

24.3

23.4

51.1

16.4

Rent Home (%)

31.1

44.1

94.8

57.8

60.6

CT 9 BG 2 1 CT 10 BG 1 2 CT 10 BG 2 3

1

One private educational facility is present in the project area: Providence Montessori in Melrose-Oak Park (providing preschool and elementary education). Also present in the project area is Calvary Cemetery. Increased noise could be of concern for visitors to the cemetery, as it is close to the Town Branch Creek and Manchester Street corridors. However, active rail lines, including the RJ Corman rail yard, surround the property on two sides and separate the cemetery from Town Branch Creek and Manchester Street; thus, noise is already present in the area. • Environmental Justice Pursuant to Executive Order 12898, Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations, the project area was examined for any minority or low-income populations that may be impacted by the project.

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

Southend Park 2 Speigel Heights, Irishtown 3 Melrose-Oak Park Source: US Census, American FactFinder (http://factfinder2.census.gov)

Economic data down to the block group level is not yet available from the 2010 census. The American Community Survey (2007-2009) was examined to determine this information. Median household and per capita income is also lower in these areas than in the county as a whole.


Based on this information, the project has potential to affect Environmental Justice communities. As the majority of the property that is adjacent to Manchester Street and Town Branch is commercial or industrial, few direct negative impacts will be experienced by these communities; no households will be relocated and no neighborhoods will be divided. Impacts to these neighborhoods are more likely to be indirect, relating to noise and traffic impacts as well as possible changes in property values because of the induced growth effect. Such an impact would benefit property owners but would negatively impact residents who rent their homes. Industrial properties separate these neighborhoods from major thoroughfares likely to carry traffic to the proposed trail and redeveloped Manchester corridor (Manchester Street, Forbes Road), although residents of Irishtown along High Street and Oliver Lewis Way lack these industrial buffers. The large industrial properties between many residents and major roadways will help alleviate some of the traffic noise visitors will generate. However, residents may contend with more vehicles in the area overall. Since the Manchester Street improvements are part of a greater project to revitalize the roadway corridor as an entertainment district, the area may experience more noise and traffic in the evening hours than currently occurs. The neighborhoods may experience positive impacts as a result of the project, such as improved street lighting, sidewalks, emergency vehicle access, and recreational opportunities. So that the project meets the needs of these neighborhoods as well as the wider community, care should be taken during the project development process to identify and include these residents during public involvement activities. This will allow the project team to fully understand and consider Environmental Justice community benefits and burdens. A full documentation of the effort to engage the Environmental Justice community is a requirement of the NEPA process. • Section 4(f) Section 4(f), as established by the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) Act of 1966 and amended in 1989 (49 USC. Section 303), states that all park and recreation lands, wildlife and waterfowl refuges, and historic sites must be considered in transportation project development. Section 4(f) applies to all projects that receive federal funding or require approval by any agencies of the USDOT. It requires that an alternative that uses a Section 4(f) resource only be selected if it can be proven that no other prudent and feasible alternatives exist and that the selected alternative minimizes disturbance to the resource. In 2005, Section 4(f) was amended to allow de minimis ruling in the event any impacts would not appreciably alter the attributes, features, or function of the resource. Pyramid Park is located on the south side of Manchester

Street, west of Driscoll Street. If the park is owned by LFUCG, acquiring right-of-way from this facility may represent a Section 4(f) impact. Traffic may increase near the park, as it is located along Manchester Street. However, as it is adjacent to railroad tracks and currently experiences heavy truck traffic, noise is already a factor at the park. Improved pedestrian facilities may enhance neighborhood access to the park. The park is also near Town Branch Creek and could benefit from proximity to the trail as trail users visit the park and vice versa. Two additional parks, Speigle Heights Park and Thompson Road Park, are located in the larger project area. However, they will not be directly impacted by the project. Indirect impacts to all parks may be increased usage as the trail is developed. An indirect impact, however, does not constitute a Section 4(f) impact.

Summary of Aquatic and Terrestrial Baseline Assessment An assessment of Town Branch Creek was performed within the limits of the Lexington Distillery District Improvement Trail and Stream Restoration project area. Existing information from a variety of sources regarding the stream and aquatic habitat was reviewed and compiled for the analysis including the watershed assessments, remedial measures plans, proposed TMDLs, and other available data. Fieldwork was also conducted to document aquatic habitat, bank stability, bank and substrate materials, riparian zone vegetation, springs, seeps, outfalls, and crossings. The aquatic macroinvertebrate community was also sampled. Town Branch Substrate with Excessive Algal Growth from Nutrient Pollution

In addition to these visual assessments, eight reaches of the stream were assessed using the Rapid Bioassessment Protocol (RBP) Assessment, according to Kentucky Division of Water (KDOW) and US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) protocols (Barbour et al. 1999) (KDOW 2011). Their documented scores reflect the condition of 10 habitat parameters and the quality of habitat available for aquatic invertebrates, which is an indicator of stream health. Water chemistry was sampled within each of the eight assessment reaches including water temperature, dissolved oxygen, pH, and specific conductance.

There are several historic structures and districts near the project area. They are discussed in the historic context that follows this section. • Section 6(f) Section 6(f) of the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act (LWFCA) of 1965 (16 USC. 4601-4) established a funding source for both federal acquisition of parks and recreation lands and matching grants to state and local governments for recreation planning, acquisition, and development. It set requirements for state planning and provided a formula for allocating annual LWCFA appropriations to the states. Section 6(f) concerns transportation projects that propose impacts to, or the permanent conversion of, outdoor recreation property that was acquired or developed with LWCFA grant assistance, which is distributed by the Interagency Committee for Outdoor Recreation of the Office of the Interagency Committee in Washington, D.C. Any right-of-way taking from a public park that has received LWCFA funding is considered a Section 6(f) impact and requires coordination with, and approval from, the National Park Service and the United States Department of the Interior. No facilities in the project area have received LWCFA funding, and therefore the project will have no Section 6(f) impacts.

Summary of Initial Environmental Review Based upon the preliminary environmental site review, there are no ecological or socioeconomic constraints to the proposed alignments of the Manchester Streetscape Improvements or Town Branch Trail design projects. Coordination with residents will be required during the environmental process to resolve concerns about noise and traffic intrusions into neighborhoods. Several sites adjacent to Manchester Street or the proposed trail alignment may contain hazardous waste-related environmental conditions requiring a Phase II Site Assessment prior to construction. If federal funds are sought for the project, NEPAlevel environmental analysis will be required.

Emergence of Town Branch Creek - Behind Rupp Arena

The purpose of this supplemental evaluation is to more fully characterize the condition of the aquatic and terrestrial setting associated with Town Branch Creek within the Project Area. This effort will support the potential for future federal funding of the project by documenting the baseline ecological conditions. It will also aid designers in their understanding of the opportunities and limitations that may exist along the stream corridor. Additional information regarding the opportunities and limitations is presented in a separate document. On August 30 and 31, 2012, and November 8, 2012, an examination of the Town Branch Creek Project Area was conducted to document observed features within or adjacent to the stream channel that could be important for future planning. Using the Center for Watershed Protection’s Urban Subwatershed Restoration Manual 10 – Unified Stream Assessments: A User’s Manual Version 1.0 (Kitchell and Schueler 2005), biologists documented the condition of outfalls, severe erosion, utility impacts, trash and debris, and stream crossings. Photographs were taken of each feature, locations were recorded with Global Positioning System (GPS), and field data sheets were completed to describe each feature and its interaction with the stream channel. Other observations concerning the bank material and structure, tree species, terrestrial and aquatic habitat, and other observations were noted during the stream walks.

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

The benthic community of Town Branch Creek was sampled at two locations within the project area. Aquatic insects were collected from available habitats at these locations, following procedures specified by KDOW (KDOW 2009a, 2009b). This field data was then combined with other available data sources to provide a comprehensive assessment of the project area. The aquatic macroinvertebrates that live within Town Branch Creek were primarily organisms tolerant of pollution, and the overall community was of poor quality. All habitat assessments over the reach were also poor. The riparian zone is narrow and dominated by exotic invasive species, the channel has been straightened, and the banks are often retaining walls or limestone blocks. No habitat for state threatened, endangered, or special concern species is present within the Town Branch Creek Project Area. Water chemistry readings reflect high conductivities (elevated ions), which lead to impaired status of the stream. Historic data indicate that the fecal coliform levels in the stream present a public health risk. One known sanitary sewer overflow occurs in the project area, the odor of sewage was observed, and the total maximum daily load (TMDL) of Town Branch Creek suspects several sanitary sewage contributions to the stream. Nutrient levels in the stream have also historically been high, contributing to the abundant algae growth throughout the reach.

15


NS T SO FE R

1 Town Branch Creek 2 McConnell Springs 3 Calvary Cemetery 4 Lexington Cemetery

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

250’ north

17


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62.5’

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Historic Context The history of the area along Manchester Street/Old Frankfort Pike is closely tied to the founding and development of Lexington itself. McConnell Springs, located along Old Frankfort Pike to the west of the Distillery District, is the place where William McConnell and his party of pioneers from Pennsylvania first camped in the area, naming the settlement Lexington in 1775. During the Revolutionary War, the McConnell brothers established a station fort on that land that would later become the James E. Pepper Distillery. As the threat of Native American attack subsided, they worked to improve their land claims and further develop this area. In the 1780s James McConnell constructed the stone residence that still stands on the north side of Manchester Street at the west end of the Distillery District. James also built an early grist mill on the property that no longer exists. Thus began a history of industry in the area that flourished in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Other early industries included the successful Trotter brothers gunpowder mill which operated at the west end of the District from 1812 to 1833, and the Prentiss brothers woolen factory and paper mill at the east end of the District, which they named Manchester, that operated during the first two decades of the nineteenth century until James Prentiss’s financial collapse.

Distillery property, constructing a modern distillery to produce the “D.L. Moore,” “Henry Clay,” “James E. Pepper,” and “Indian Hill” brands until closing the distillery in 1958. Nearby, the William Tarr/Ashland Distillery produced the “Ashland,” “Old William Tarr,” “Kentucky Belle,” “Old Barton,” “Old Pugh,” “Red Heart,” and “Old Kentucky Home” brands of whiskey under several different ownerships until Prohibition ceased production in 1920. Although the warehouses continued to be used throughout the following decade, distilling never again occurred at this site. As the influence of the whiskey distilleries faded, the industries continued to operate in this area, including the Manchester Street Tobacco Warehouse Company, several oil companies, and meat packers, including the Lexington Livestock Commission Company, and the Munns Brothers Meat Warehouse. Today several buildings associated with these industries remain in the District.

The review indicated that one archaeological investigation had been conducted, but no sites had been documented within the project area. There were 18 archaeological sites either eligible for the NRHP or for which eligibility has not been assessed within the 2 km overview area.

Former Old Tarr Distillery

Cultural Resources Overview Study

James McConnell House

These early manufacturers established the area as one of Lexington’s industrial centers, and subsequent industries moved in to take advantage of the area’s springs, proximity to Town Branch Creek, and location on the railroad tracks. The most famous of these are the James E. Pepper Distillery, established at the west end of the District in 1879, and the William Tarr/ Ashland Distillery, established at the east end of the District in 1865. The Pepper Distillery established a respected name for itself producing the “Henry Clay,” “Old Lexington,” “Old Oscar Pepper”, “Pepper,” and “Old Pepper” brands until Prohibition closed operations in 1920. However, unlike many of its competitors, the Pepper Distillery was able to survive Prohibition by receiving government permission to distill and market medicinal whiskey to pharmacists. With the passage of the Twenty-First Amendment ending Prohibition in 1933, Schenley Products purchased the Pepper

District Project Area had been previously surveyed, including two properties, the Pepper Distillery and the James McConnell House, that are listed in the NRHP. Several other NRHP properties and Kentucky Heritage Council survey properties were identified within a 304.8m (1,000.0 ft) buffer study area surrounding the project area. A search of records maintained by the Office of State Archaeology was conducted to: 1. Determine the locations of areas previously surveyed for archaeological resources within the project area and within a 2.0 km (1.2 mi) buffer around the proposed District. 2. Identify any previously recorded archaeological sites that were situated within the above-described area. 3. Provide information concerning what archaeological resources could be expected within the project area. 4. Provide a context for any archaeological resources identified within the project area and the 2 km buffer.

As a component of the feasibility study, a cultural resources overview was completed for the Lexington Distillery District Improvement Program. Since the identity of the District is strongly tied to the founding and industrial development of Lexington, this cultural resources overview study provides a historic context for better understanding the history and identifies historic resources representative of the District’s historical themes that should be incorporated into the development plans. Additionally, this study identifies known architectural and archaeological historic properties that must be taken into consideration if the proposed project utilizes federal funding or requires federal permitting, necessitating compliance with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, and predicts the likelihood of identifying other properties within the project area that are eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP). A search of records maintained by the Kentucky Heritage Council was conducted to determine whether previously documented architectural resources 50 years of age or older were located in the project area. The records review indicated that seven properties situated within the proposed Distillery

The study recommended that the proposed improvements should encourage the preservation of, and avoid adverse impacts to, known historic properties. Since marketing and branding efforts for the District strongly emphasize the area’s bourbon distilling heritage, the proposed improvements to the District should take great care to preserve and emphasize the physical features of the District related to the theme, including the NNRHP-listed Pepper Distillery property, surviving warehouses associated with the Ashland Distillery, and the two lifelines of the District, Town Branch Creek and the railroad lines. Other aspects of the area’s history, such as its ties to Lexington’s founding, its other industrial legacies, and its relationship to the working class neighborhood of Irishtown should also be considered in the planning process. The following resources will help guide the design of the proposed improvements to be compatible with the District’s historic character:

• Resources such as Kentucky Streetscape Design Guidelines for Historic Commercial Districts. • Creating Vibrant Public Spaces: Streetscape Design in Commercial and Historic Districts. • The Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties. Although these resources will provide valuable guidelines, the designers should also consider the differences between the mixed-use industrial Distillery District and a traditional commercial District so that the proposed designs retain the industrial character of the area that make it unique rather than transform it into a typical commercial center. The designs must be particularly sensitive to the existing and historical context of the District when designing improvements directly adjacent to NRHPlisted or eligible historic properties, such as the Pepper Distillery and James McConnell house. A baseline cultural historic survey of the District was recommended and completed to evaluate previously unrecorded historic resources in the District, such as the warehouses formerly associated with the Ashland Distillery, to determine whether they are eligible for listing in the NRHP. A baseline archaeological survey was also recommended and completed to ascertain whether any buried historic and/or prehistoric sites are present within the project area. Since any aspects of the improvement project that utilize federal funding or require a federal permit must consider impacts to NRHP-listed or eligible historic properties, a complete baseline survey will serve as a valuable planning tool for avoiding or minimizing any potential adverse effects.

Cultural Historic Baseline Study The cultural historic baseline field effort identified a total of 47 cultural historic sites within the area of potential effect. Through the evaluation, it was determined that nine of the sites retain sufficient integrity to be listed in the NRHP. Of the nine, only the historic stone walls have the potential to be directly impacted.

Archaeological Baseline Study The archaeological baseline study surveyed the grassy and/or vegetated portions of the project area. The investigations resulted in the discovery of five previously unrecorded archaeological sites. All of the sites documented were historic and dated from the mid- to late nineteenth century through the mid- to late twentieth century. No prehistoric material was found during the inventory. Through the current investigations, the degree of site integrity could not be determined for two of the sites. Therefore, it was recommended that those properties be avoided or subjected to further work to assess their NRHP status.

James E. Pepper Distillery - Bonded Warehouse

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

19


Lexington Cemeter y

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Thompson Rd.

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Outbuilding [James E. Pepper Distillery]

F

Water Tower [James E. Pepper Distillery]

G Settling Tank [James E. Pepper Distillery] H Abandoned rail spur and bridge over Town Branch Creek I

Concrete Block Building [James E. Pepper Distillery]

View of James E. Pepper Distillery from Manchester Street looking west

View of east elevation of James E. Pepper Distillery Bonded Warehouse

James McConnell House

Overview of James E. Pepper Distilling Plant, Office/Service buildings, Barrel Storage, Recooperage, and Branding Warehouse looking west

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20

100’ 200’

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

Non-contributing Structure Abandoned Railroad Connection Original Town Branch Creek Path Relocated Town Branch Creek Path


Existing Architectural and Cultural Resources East District

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A Bonded Warehouse [W.M. Tarr Distillery] Currently

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Buster’s Billiards and Backroom, The Barrel House, MS Renzy Studio Gallery.

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recorded historic site. Currently vacant parcel. C Old Church Building circa 1920 [916 Manchester St.]

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Currently Cloud Sealant and Striping Company. D Former House site [922 Manchester St.] Previously

recorded historic site. Currently vacant parcel. E Former House site [922 Manchester St.] Previously

recorded historic site. Currently vacant parcel.

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Historic house located on the east corner of Perry St. and Manchester St. [964 Manchester St.]

Historic house located on the corner of Perry St. and Manchester St. [1000 Manchester St.]

Historical Society marker in front of Buster’s Billiards and Backroom.

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

400’ north

Non-contributing Structure AbandonedRailroad Connection Original Town Branch Path Relocated Town Branch Path

21


Neighborhoods The Manchester Street corridor and the proposed redevelopment area is bordered by three neighborhoods: Irishtown, MelroseOak Park, and Speigle Heights. These adjoining neighborhoods have been isolated over time by industrial development and elevated highways and railroads that limit connectivity and access to surrounding areas. Because of public impact to their neighborhoods in the past, some of the residents expressed concerns of uncertainty with the City’s plan to move forward with the District. Through outreach efforts, members of the consultant team were able to meet with these concerned residents to provide information about the Distillery District project and obtain their input on the plan and proposed public improvments. The following is a discussion of each of the three neighborhood public meetings.

Irishtown Residents of the neighborhood feel that their concerns on previous planning efforts for the area were unanswered and, as a result, are fearfull of potential impacts from the project. Other expressed concerns included the volume of truck traffic along Manchester Street and crime within the neighborhood. The meeting participants voiced fear that the proposed development would take away the historic identity of the Irishtown neighborhood. Plans for the proposed future development have shown neighborhood homes being converted into new development, which led to concerns for additional loss of the existing housing stock. Other proposed development concerns include concerns over more bars and vehicular traffic. The neighborhood participants acknowledge that the project has potential to provide benefits to the neighborhood as well. Various enhancements the neighborhood would encourage include improved pedestrian access, removal of existing abandoned houses, neighborhood cleanup, increased employment opportunities for the residents, development that includes places the residents can patronize, park improvements, and preservation of important historic elements and churches.

bus shelters, incorporate green elements, reduce truck traffic, clean up the distilleries, and include public improvements to the neighborhood.

Speigle Heights The participating neighborhood group expressed unanimous concern that new development not be allowed to displace residents from their homes. After development, fears also exist that the increased property value in the District will result in corresponding increases to their property taxes. The neighborhood would like to see the project provide sewer improvements within the neighborhood as well the Manchester Corridor. They also expressed hope that the development will include places for them to conveniently shop and dine.

Existing Corridor The following findings and observations are based on field investigation and photographic inventories of the planning area. Planning and design principles and recommendations for future improvements can be found in subsequent section(s) of the study. General findings and observations are as follows.

Currently there are no dedicated bike lanes or trail facilities through this area although plans call for the Town Branch Trail to eventually extend through the corridor. Traffic control devices along the corridor include a signal at Oliver Lewis Way, a signal at Forbes Road, and a railroad signal for the at-grade rail crossing in the middle of the corridor at the confluence area.

Right-of-Way The existing Manchester Street corridor does not have archived plans that document the right-of-way limits for the roadway. As part of the feasibility study, a parcel map has been prepared using available records including deeds and limited highway plans from KYTC to generate a working right-of-way strip map. The existing right-of-way is not consistent, as the plats of record for the East District indicate right-of-way width varying from 49 to 54 feet. In the West District, right-of-way varies from 40 to 80 feet with the majority being 40 feet in width. The side streets along the corridor also do not have consistent widths and vary from 33 to 45 feet. Review of NS and CSX Railroad company property records indicate their respective ownership of several parcels along the roadway corridor.

Railroad Overpass and Bridges (Confluence) Roadway Manchester Street is an undivided urban arterial street with one lane of travel in each direction. Doubling as KY 1681, Manchester Street is a state-maintained roadway that eventually connects to New Circle Road. The East District has sporadic on-street parking with curb and gutter and sidewalks on each side of the street. The West District has a more rural county road typical section with no curb and gutter, sidewalks, or on-street parking. Street lighting consists of overhead cobra lights that primarily light the street. The two sections of the district are divided by railroad crossings, one at-grade and the other by overpass. Both East and West Districts have situations where existing buildings are in close proximity to the edge of the traveled roadway. The close buildings and railroad abutments create access concerns with reduced sight distance and make it challenging to incorporate desired roadway enhancements within the limited available right-of-way.

The confluence of the Manchester Street corridor, NS Railroad, RJ Corman Railroad, and Town Branch Creek features three bridge structures with layered conveyance facilities. Since the confluence will be a major consideration in the alternatives development, a site visit was conducted in September 2011 followed by a review of existing bridge inspection reports. Constructed in the early 1900s, the top tier of the confluence is a mainline NS railroad track and bridge. Manchester Street

Melrose-Oak Park The participating members of this neighborhood group expressed serious concern with the rising crime in the neighborhood. Other concerns included existing cut-through traffic, the volume of truck traffic on Manchester Street, and dust from the nearby quarry that plagues their neighborhood. The stakeholders expressed anxiety about the development taking homes and properties within the neighborhood.

NS Railroad Overpass - RJ Corman At-Grade Crossing

The neighborhood would like to see the following improvements as part of the project: improved pedestrian access, provide

Narrow Roadway Corridor

22

The existing culvert structure, which conveys the Town Branch Creek, exhibits several small to large concrete spalls with exposed reinforcement in the inlet headwall. Several cracks and spalls were also observed in the culvert side walls. According to the KYTC bridge inspection dated June 6, 2011, the culvert has experienced moderate to major deterioration or disintegration. The culvert sufficiency rating currently classifies the culvert as being eligible for federal bridge rehabilitation funding. Therefore, the need for structure replacement should not influence alternative decisions.

crosses the middle tier of the confluence, which includes an RJ Corman at-grade railroad crossing and private entrance driveway. The bottom tier includes the Town Branch Creek and its tributary which flows from the University of Kentucky. In the early 2000s, RJ Corman Railroad added another tier, which included burial of communication lines to meet overhead clearance requirements for its rail facility.

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

Manchester Street Bridge/NS Railroad Overpass Abutment

The NS overpass has limestone abutments with several cracks, efflorescence, and spalling. The KYTC bridge inspection report dated May 19, 2011, indicates this bridge is in fair condition and the structural elements exhibit some minor deterioration. The report also states the bearing devices are heavily deteriorated. The roadway and railroad bridge crossing is a constraint on the available roadway section width. Widening the crossing would require major expense with two temporary railroad bridges and close coordination with railroad officials. The major expense associated with widening the overpass is a significant factor in alternative alignment development. The third structure at the confluence location is an additional culvert that crosses under the NS Railroad overpass. This culvert was constructed in the 1930s and is part of a lengthy system that extends through the University of Kentucky campus capturing drainage area that includes Chevy Chase. The existing structure exhibits several spalls in the underside of the top slab with exposed reinforcement. Spalls with exposed reinforcement were also observed in the side walls. The bottom slab exhibits section loss evidenced by exposed aggregate; however, no exposed reinforcement was observed. Water flowing out of the culvert was cloudy with an odor similar to a sanitary sewer. The culvert was built adjacent to the southern bridge abutment wall to the NS railroad overpass, as shown in the image on the following page. Because of the proximity to the adjacent Town Branch culvert structure and its current condition, replacement should not influence alternative decisions.


at West Main Street and Versailles Road. The RJ Corman Rail Yard, NS Rail Line, and Vulcan Materials Quarry site have limited the potential development of new cross-access linkages; therefore, existing access should be carefully considered and improved wherever possible for all modes of transportation.

Railroad Facilities

represents a critical location in Lexington’s sanitary sewer system where an infrastructure failure would present significant problems for Town Branch Creek. From this point, the sanitary sewer runs under both railroad lines following along the north side of the RJ Corman/CSX railroad tracks through the West District.

The District has deep roots in the rail industry with RJ Corman, NS, and CSX all having rail infrastructure and property rights along the roadway corridor. Railroads will greatly influence the alignment alternative considerations, and the final configuration will have multiple points of interaction with active rail facilities. Manchester Street Culvert Plan - University of Kentucky Tributary

The remaining roadway bridge, located west of Pepper Distillery, was constructed in 2000. The existing abutments exhibited minor cracking propagating up from the weep holes with some debris buildup at the pier. Debris was also observed on top of the pier, between the box beams, and at the guardrail connections, which suggests that the waterway opening is not adequate to provide sufficient freeboard over the base flood elevation and overtopping of the structure may be possible. The existing structure was designed for a rural roadway section. If it is desired to accommodate bicycle and pedestrian traffic across the bridge, modifications should be considered, which will likely require the bridge to be widened.

promote higher vehicular travel speeds. Dust along the roadway is prevalent throughout the corridor, which appears to originate from significant heavy construction vehicular traffic.

Traffic and Travel Characteristics Manchester Street serves the various industrial uses along the corridor and adjacent neighborhoods as an important connector to other urban streets leading into and out of the area most notably via Oliver Lewis Way, South Forbes Road, and New Circle Road. With the current land uses that include small businesses, warehouses, a rock quarry, and asphalt plant, large truck traffic comprises a significant portion of trips that regularly traverse the corridor. The existing corridor is attractive to trucks because of its location relative to industry, lack of impeding traffic infrastructure, wide lanes, and low overall traffic volumes. The lack of traffic control and wide lanes also tends to

EA EAST A AST ST T DIS STR T ICT IC CT

RJ Corman Rail Yard Town Branch Creek

Manchester St.

Aerial Sewer Crossing (East District)

Existing Railroads Along Project Corridor

The original Town Branch Trail Feasibility Study showed potential trail alignments utilizing rail infrastructure that is currently in use. With major decision points in considering relationships and potential opportunities to leverage existing railroad right-of-way, an outreach effort with affected railroad interests was undertaken to discuss:

Truck Traffic

Bridge and Debris (West of Pepper Distillery)

WE ES ST T DIS STR TRIC IIC CT

KYTC’s Division of Planning completed a traffic count in 2008, which determined an ADT volume of 6,770 trips per day. The KYTC bridge inspection reports noted approximately 15 percent of the ADT as heavy trucks. It is expected the proposed improvements will result in additional development and consequential increasing traffic volume. With the recent addition of Oliver Lewis Way, it is also expected there will be increased traffic as a result of improved accessibility to the area. The projected traffic volume and design vehicle will be important considerations in the development of a proposed typical section(s) throughout the corridor. Additionally, the suitability of the typical section(s) ultimately proposed may be influenced by future changes in land uses from those that presently exist. The existing corridor provides limited on-street parking along Manchester Street in the East District only. The parking is not metered and is unmarked. LexTran has multiple bus stops along the corridor although no current stops feature bus shelter facilities.

Linkages

(between Downtown and Adjacent Neighborhoods)

Physical barriers and significant modifications and development of the area’s transportation network have resulted in a highly restricted street network with poor north-south access to existing neighborhoods and the major parallel thoroughfares

• Relocating existing crossings to improve sight distance. • Feasibility of decomissioning actively used rail infrastructure and required rail modifications. • Realignment of existing crossings. • Potential opportunities to celebrate the rail history within the District. The coordination discussions ultimately helped to identify the alternatives analysis and outlline an implementation strategy for the recommended plan.

Storm and Sanitary Sewer Infrastructure With the exception of the small segment between Oliver Lewis Way and Pine Street, the infrastructure along the corridor consists of some of the oldest in Lexington. Roadway drainage facilities are extremely limited and located only in low points or to allow off-site drainage to flow into the creek. The limited storm sewer infrastructure results in localized ponding and creates situations where channelized water flows in and along the streets throughout the District.

The remaining sanitary sewer line crosses Town Branch Creek just upstream of the bonded warehouse with an aerial crossing before crossing under the railroad tracks and connecting with the previously mentioned trunk. Because of elevation constraints with the major trunk sewer, this sanitary sewer is extremely shallow providing little opportunity for connection to the system by gravity. This ultimately impacts the sewerability of the West District which in turn restricts the redevelopment potential. LFUCG has planned improvements to the two trunks serving the University of Kentucky area as part of the remedial measures plan within the next 10 years. In addition, the 30-inch trunk under Manchester Street serving the East District properties is in poor condition and rehabilitation will be evaluated. The area also has a recurring SSO near the railroad bridge overpass. The exhibits on page 30 and 31 highlight the existing storm and sanitary infrastructure along the corridor.

Utilities Disposition of existing and proposed utilities will play a significant role in making the District aesthetically pleasing and safe while accommodating future growth. The existing corridor contains numerous above- and belowground utilities running parallel and perpendicular to the existing roadway. This includes a significant overhead electric transmission facility that parallels the existing right-of-way. With this area of Lexington being older and underdeveloped by today’s standards, the existing utility infrastructure will require significant upgrades and improvements to adequately serve the anticipated needs of the District.

The East District has four main sanitary trunk sewer systems, two carrying flow from the downtown Central Business District and two extending from the University of Kentucky portion of the upstream sewershed. These trunks converge just east of the existing railroad overpass and cross Town Branch Creek through an aerial concrete pipe shown below. This convergence

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

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Existing overhead utilities can detract from the visual quality of urban streetscape and trail environments. Burying existing utility lines is often expensive but a measurable improvement to streetscape and trail aesthetics. Another option includes rerouting overhead utilities to the perimeter or rear of the development and backfeed service into the Manchester Street corridor. With only limited space within the existing right-of-way, analyzing various options will be essential in meeting the cumulative infrastructure needs of the project.

Public Spaces There is one dedicated public space located in each of the neighborhoods immediately adjacent to the corridor: Speigle Heights Park, Thompson Road Park, and Pyramind Park. Each public space has an outdoor basketball court, a playground, and a shelter while Speigle Heights Park also has an open playing field. The combined area of these neighborhood parks is approximately 5 acres with little difference in amenities.

Thompson Road Park

• Existing Overhead Utilities

In responding to this important design consideration, an outreach effort was initiated with local utility companies that included: • AT&T • Columbia Gas of Kentucky • Insight Communications • Kentucky American Water • Kentucky Utilities - Distribution • Kentucky Utilities - Transmission • LFUCG Sanitary Sewers • Sprint • TW Telecom Inc. • Windstream Communications Through this study, coordination meetings between the design team and the utilities have resulted in valuable input as to the adequacy of existing facilities systems as well as providing essential feedback on what would be involved with relocation and upgrades to existing utilities in this area. These meetings provided the forum for utility companies to: • Review preliminary alternatives for upgrading their systems to meet future capacity. • Analyze the necessity of upgrading aging infrastructure. • Coordinate with other utilities in the corridor. • Address the possible cost implications for future development scenarios.

24

Analysis and Findings In evaluating the corridor, the planning team conducted multiple site visits to obtain background and insights relative to potential opportunities and constraints that could influence decisionmaking. These activities included photo-documenting the entire corridor and reconnaissance of the peripheral areas to gain a full understanding of the existing physical conditions and current on-site and adjacent land use. The previously discussed physical conditions investigation and corridor analysis led to the following opportunities and constraints.

• •

Opportunities • High and Main Street Connectivity. The Town Branch, Vine Street Promenade, and Legacy Trails could connect via a network of on- and off-road facilities along Newtown Pike, High, and Main Streets. • Newtown Pike Linkage. Utilizing the Newtown Pike extension, strategically link Transylvania, Bluegrass Community and Technical College and the University of Kentucky campuses with downtown using a network of integrated trails. • Fill the Gap. Integrate the design of the Manchester Street corridor with Rupp Arena, Arts and Entertainment Districts, and Town Branch Commons planned improvements. • Jefferson Street. Transform the Jefferson Street viaduct from a “service street” to a “live-work-play street” that links neighborhoods to the north and south. • Connect Manchester Street to High Street. Creation of a new gateway to the Rupp Arena, Arts and Entertainment Districts along a more pedestrian-friendly two-way thoroughfare. • Complete Street. Roadway improvements along the east section of Manchester Street could feature more comprehensive streetscape amenities. • Bikeway Trail. The proposed bikeway trail could be routed as a separated multiuse pathway along Manchester Street as a

• • •

means to heighten visibility, promote mixed-use development and create an enhanced sense of vibrancy along the corridor. Central Confluence Area. The confluence of the Town Branch, Roadway, Railroad, and Trail could become the signature public space at the midpoint of the Distillery District. Realigning the roadway provides additional width allowing for pedestrian and bicycle movements under the railroad. Neighborhood Anchor. Perry and Willard Streets could become the anchorpoints for the development of streetscape amenities and social gathering spaces which strengthen the identity and physical linkages of the Irishtown Neighborhood. Residential Neighborhood Context. Future residential development fronting along new neighborhood streets to maintain a scale, pattern, and intimacy appropriate to the existing neighborhood. Pine Street. Future improvements along Pine Street could create a stronger neighborhood gateway at Oliver Lewis Way and reestablish pedestrian access between Versailles Road, Oliver Lewis Way, and Valley Street. Incremental Trail Improvements. Off-road trail improvements incrementally phased to coincide with the redevelopment of sites abutting the Town Branch Creek while exposing the natural beauty of the stream. Trail Connections to Manchester Street. Opportunity to develop an urban, on-street trail along Manchester Street suggesting one or a series of lateral connections between the trail extending along the railroad bed south to Manchester Street. Utilization of Existing Railroad Bed. Connection with the terminus of the Town Branch Trail utilizing the grade of the existing railroad right-of-way. Thompson Street. Future improvements to the corridor in this vicinity to create increased pedestrian activity, improved safety, additional green space, and strong linkages to the proposed pathway along the Pepper Distillery and Town Branch Creek. Telling the Story. Transformation of a narrow parcel between the rail line and Manchester Street into a linear park and greenway to celebrate the founding of Lexington and recall the history of the area’s industrial past. Forbes Road Improvements. Intersection enhancements at Forbes Road to create a new gateway and more inviting and pedestrian-friendly linkage to the Melrose-Oak Park Neighborhood. The James McConnell House. A focal point along the greenway. Future property acquisition and development could extend the greenway and offer an enhanced experience along the trail. Versailles Rail Line. Potential future connection to the proposed rail-to-trail route along the Versailles rail line. Trail Loop. Direct connection to the historic Pepper Distillery along the naturalized bank of the Town Branch Creek and back to Manchester Street to complete the loop. Direct connection. Placing the trail along Manchester Street under the existing active railroad bridge and parallel with the Town Branch Creek as it extends west.

Contraints • Trails near Railroads. Corridor surrounded by active railroads and active rail yard. Development of the trail in proximity to

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

• •

the existing active railroad is a challenge from a physical and liability perspective. Safety and protecting the health and welfare of trail users is key. Provisions must be made to prove adequate vertical grade and horizontal separation from active railroad lines. Existing Floodplain. The entire West District is significantly impacted by the floodplain. Further floodplain investigation is required before development can occur on the Pepper Distillery property. Existing floodplain reduces development potential. Development must not increase flooding potential, but mitigate the negative impacts of surface stormwater through sustainable solutions; pervious materials, wetlands, bioswales, rain gardens and open green space. Right-of-Way Acquisition. In order to incorporate appropriate width for sidewalks, off-street trails and sidewalk cafes, acquisition of a few properties may be required. If the trail is adjacent to Town Branch in the East District, an active rail line is required to be relocated. Pedestrian Bridge. Needs for pedestrian bridge and possible tunneling under active Norfolk South railroad. Trail plans must limit the need for crossing vehicular roadways. To promote trails unimpeded by public road crossing, pedestrian bridges and potential of tunneling through the railroad, use of embankments will require investigation. Truck Traffic and Dust. The industrial corridor has a high percentage of truck traffic and dust caused by an adjacent quarry operation. Many of the resident complaints are a result of the significant truck traffic and dust along the corridor and in their neighborhood. A pedestrian-friendly corridor will compete with the truck route, so discussions with the sources of this traffic need to occur if this corridor is to be transformed as proposed. Implementation Cost. The overall costs of construction will require a significant public investment. Priorities for the corridor will need to be identified and established as part of a long-term phased implementation plan. Existing Neighborhood and Proposed Development. The proposed development must complement the existing neighborhoods and preserve the sanctity and rich heritage of the neighborhood while promoting the area as a destination and commercial hub. This includes public reinvestment in the neighborhoods public infrastructure and public space. Access to Neighborhoods. Manchester Street Realignment. Current right-of-way width of Manchester Street under the active Norfolk Southern railroad is narrow. In order to provide a separate pedestrian corridor, Manchester Street will require some realignment and subsequent modifications to the existing Town Branch Creek and University of Kentucky culvert. Town Branch Stream Bank Stabilization. The natural beauty of portions of the Town Branch Creek is currently unrealized. Recommendations need to be made for improvements to the naturalized section of the trail relative to its function as a drainage way and its potential as a trail/greenway corridor. Sanitary Sewer Service. The Pepper Distillery and other properties within the West District are currently unsewered. Provisions for providing sanitary sewer service to these properties will help increase property values and the marketability of the West District.


Linkages and Connections 1

Potential two-way High Street extension.

2

Potential conversion of High Street from one-way west to two-way.

3

Potential conversion of Maxwell Street from one-way east to two-way.

Legend Gateway Intersection

Parks

Significant Intersection

Railroad

At-Grade Crossing

Roadway

Grade-Separated Crossing

Legacy Trail Route

Proposed Town Branch Trail Route

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

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Opportunities - West District 1

Central Central Confluence Area. The confluence of the Town Branch Creek, Roadway, Railroad, and Trail could become the signature public space at the midpoint of the Distillery District.

2 Thompson Street. Future improvements to the corridor

in this vicinity to create increased pedestrian activity, improved safety, additional green space and strong linkages to the proposed pathway along the Pepper Distillery and Town Branch Creek. 3 Telling the Story. Transformation of a narrow parcel

between the rail line and Manchester Street into a linear park and greenway to celebrate the founding of Lexington and recall the history of the area’s industrial past. 4 Forbes Road Improvements. Intersection enhancements at

Forbes Road to create a new gateway and more inviting and pedestrian-friendly linkage to the Melrose-Oak Park Neighborhood. 5 Incremental Trail Improvements. Off-road trail

improvements incrementally phased to coincide with the redevelopment of sites abutting the Town Branch Creek while exposing the natural beauty of the stream. 6 The James McConnell House. A focal point along the

greenway.

Potential for long-term connectivity with Legacy Trail, University of Kentucky, downtown Lexington, future extensions of the Town Branch Trail to complete a full and connected network of pedestrian and bicycle trails in Lexington.

7 Connectivity.

8 Versailles Rail Line. Potential future connection to the

proposed rail to trail route along the Versailles rail line. 9 Trail Loop. Direct connection to the historic Pepper

Distillery along the naturalized bank of the Town Branch Creek and back to Manchester Street to complete the loop. 10 Direct connection. Placing the trail along Manchester

Street under the existing active railroad bridge and parallel with the Town Branch Creek as it extends west.

0’

26

62.5’

125’

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Opportunities - East District 1

High and Main Street Connectivity. The Town Branch, Vine Street Promenade, and Legacy Trails could connect via a network of on- and off-road facilities along Newtown Pike, High and Main Streets. 2 Newtown Pike Linkage. Utilizing the Newtown Pike extension, strategically link Transylvania, BCTC and U.K. campuses with downtown using a network of integrated trails. 3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

13 14 0’

62.5’

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

250’ north

Fill the Gap. Integrate the design of the Manchester Street corridor with Rupp Arena, Arts and Entertainment Districts, and Town Branch Commons planned improvements. Jefferson Street. Transform the Jefferson Street Viaduct from a “service street” to a “live-work-play street” that links neighborhoods to the north and south. Connect Manchester Street to High Street. Creation of a new gateway to the Rupp Arena, Arts and Entertainment Districts along a more pedestrian-friendly two-way thoroughfare. Complete Street. Roadway improvements along the east section of Manchester Street could feature more comprehensive streetscape amenities. Bikeway Trail. The proposed bikeway trail could be routed as a separated multiuse pathway along Manchester Street as a means to heighten visibility, promote mixed-use development, and create an enhanced sense of vibrancy along the corridor. Central Confluence Area. The confluence of the Town Branch Creek, Roadway, Railroad, and Trail could become the signature public space at the midpoint of the Distillery District. Neighborhood Anchor. Perry and Willard Streets could become the anchorpoints for the development of streetscape amenities and social gathering spaces which strengthen the identity and physical linkages of the Irishtown Neighborhood. Residential Neighborhood Context. Future residential development fronting along new neighborhood streets to maintain a scale, pattern, and intimacy appropriate to the existing neighborhood. Pine Street. Future improvements along Pine Street could create a stronger neighborhood gateway at Oliver Lewis Way and reestablish pedestrian access between Versailles Road, Oliver Lewis Way, and Valley Street. Incremental Trail Improvements. Off-road trail improvements incrementally phased to coincide with the redevelopment of sites abutting the Town Branch Creek while exposing the natural beauty of the stream. Trail Connections to Manchester Street. Utilization of Existing Railroad Bed. Connection with the terminus of Town Branch Trail utilizing the grade of the existing railroad right-of-way.

27


Constraints - West District

0’

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

1

Trails near Railroads. Corridor surrounded by active railroads and active rail yard. Development of the trail in proximity to the existing active railroad is a challenge from a physical and liability perspective.

2

Existing Floodplain. The entire West District is significantly impacted by the floodplain. Further floodplain investigation is required before development can occur on the Pepper Distillery property.

3

Right-of-Way Acquisition. In order to incorporate appropriate width for sidewalks, off-street trails, and sidewalk cafes, acquisition of a few properties may be required. If the trail is adjacent to Town Branch Creek in the East District, an active rail line is required to be relocated.

4

Pedestrian Bridge. Needs for pedestrian bridge and possible tunneling under active Norfolk South railroad.

5

Manchester Street Realignment. Current right-of-way width of Manchester Street under the active Norfolk Southern railroad is narrow.

6

Town Branch Stream Bank Stabilization. The natural beauty of portions of Town Branch Creek is currently unrealized.

7

Sanitary Sewer Service. The Pepper Distillery and other properties within the West District are currently unsewered.

8

Truck Traffic and Dust. The industrial corridor has a high percentage of truck traffic and dust caused by an adjacent quarry operation.

9

Implementation Cost. The overall costs of construction will require a significant public investment.

10

Existing Neighborhood and Proposed Development. The proposed development must complement the existing neighborhoods and preserve the sanctity and rich heritage of the neighborhood while promoting the area as a destination and commercial hub.

11

Access to Neighborhoods.


Constraints - East District

0’

62.5’

125’

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

1

Trails near Railroads. Corridor surrounded by active railroads and active rail yard. Development of the trail in proximity to the existing active railroad is a challenge from a physical and liability perspective.

2

Existing Floodplain. The entire West District is significantly impacted by the floodplain. Further floodplain investigation is required before development can occur on the Pepper Distillery property.

3

Right-of-Way Acquisition. In order to incorporate appropriate width for sidewalks, off-street trails and sidewalk cafes, acquisition of a few properties may be required. If the trail is adjacent to Town Branch Creek in the East District, an active rail line is required to be relocated.

4

Pedestrian Bridge. Needs for pedestrian bridge and possible tunneling under active Norfolk South railroad.

5

Truck Traffic and Dust. The industrial corridor has a high percentage of truck traffic and dust caused by an adjacent quarry operation.

6

Implementation Cost. The overall costs of construction will require a significant public investment.

7

Existing Neighborhood and Proposed Development. The proposed development must complement the existing neighborhoods and preserve the sanctity and rich heritage of the neighborhood while promoting the area as a destination and commercial hub.

8

Access to Neighborhoods.

250’ north

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Storm and Sanitary Sewer Line Locations West District 1 Existing Sanitary Sewer Aerial Stream Crossing 2 Unsewered Area 3 Existing Sewer Location is Problematic for West

District to Connect by Gravity 4 Shallow Gravity Sewer Inaccessible to Pepper

Distillery by Gravity

Legend Sanitary Sewer Pipeline Sanitary Sewer Force Main Storm Sewer Pipeline Storm Culvert Town Branch Creek 0’

30

62.5’

125’

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Storm and Sanitary Sewer Line Locations East District 1 Reoccurring Sanitary Sewer Overflow (SSO) 2 Existing Sanitary Sewer Aerial Stream Crossing 3 Remedial Measures Planned Improvements to

Increase the Size of the Two Parallel Sanitary Trunk Sewers Receiving Flow from the University of Kentucky and Chevy Chase Areas 4 Sanitary Sewer Trunk Receiving Flow from the South

Side of Downtown 5 Sanitary Sewer Trunk Receiving Flow from the North

Side of Downtown 6 Remedial Measures Planned Evaluation of Sanitary

Sewer Trunk Rehabilitation

Legend Sanitary Sewer Pipeline Sanitary Sewer Force Main Storm Sewer Pipeline Storm Culvert Town Branch Creek 0’

62.5’

125’

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

250’ north

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Lexington Greenway System and Park Trails Plan The Distillery District has significant potential for long term connectivity with the Legacy Trail, University of Kentucky campus, nearby residential neighborhoods, downtown Lexington, and future extensions of Town Branch Trail to complete a comprehensive network of pedestrian and bicycle trails in Lexington. The Lexington Greenway System and Park Trails Plan illustrates potential city and county wide connectivity to the Distillery District.

7

1 Legacy Trail 2 Town Branch Trail 3 Distillery District 4 Downtown Lexington 5 Rupp Arena 2

6 University of Kentucky 7 Masterson Station Park STUDY AREA

1

3

5 4

6

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

Legend


Distillery District Public Improvement Program Defining Principles The development of the proposed initial trail, roadway, and streetscape improvements are an important inducement to private sector developers, business interests, and investors. The expectation that public investment can incentivize subsequent private investment is supported by a multitude of local and regional examples where basic services and amenities already exist and other barriers, risks, and disincentives to private investment can be overcome without further public participation. The ultimate restoration and repair of the Manchester Corridor, Town Branch Creek, and the neighborhoods that define the District will occur through an evolving series of public and private initiatives that shape the character and quality of the District’s public realm and provide required improvements, services, and amenities over many years. The defining principles identified with this study are intended to inform future decisions and guide public policy regarding current and future investment. They were developed as a result of public comments and advisory committee involvement. These principles are reflected within a conceptual framework plan that supports the TIF applicant’s desired program of land uses while establishing guidelines for a future network of public infrastructure, neighborhood parks, and open space that responds to the aspirations of area residents and comments received from local stakeholders and the general public.

Context-Sensitive/Neighborhood-Sensitive Context-sensitive design principles establish guidelines for redevelopment that protect the most desirable attributes of the existing district or neighborhood while promoting a complimentary form and pattern of redevelopment. • Scale and Massing The conceptual framework plan shows a pattern of development where building placement follows the prevailing setbacks of the District’s contributing building stock. Parking and service areas are screened by building masses. New parallel streets establish well-defined transitions between the smaller residential scale of the adjoining neighborhoods and the larger building masses and parking concentrations that reestablish a cohesive street wall along Manchester Street. • Circulation & Walkability Narrow streets, double-fronted streetscapes, rear-loaded drive access, and improved sidewalks and lighting emphasize the walkability and pedestrian orientation of the District’s street network.

Restorative The overall quality of the westernmost portion of Town Branch Creek bears witness to the resiliency of nature and the potential for dramatic improvement in the ecological and environmental

quality of the District’s most precious natural resource. Future investment should stress strategies and physical improvements that reduce chemical, biological, and visual pollutants and reestablish Town Branch Creek as a high quality stream corridor and anchor of the proposed linear park and urban greenway, which leads through the downtown.

Sustainable • Healthier Ecosystems Future investment in property acquisition and development should consolidate and reconnect fragmented and degraded stream buffers, daylight buried stream channels, and increase the functional area, diversity, and quality of open spaces. • Functional, Smart Infrastructure Investments in roadway infrastructure should reduce future energy demands, maximize the lifecycle of new facilities, and respond to the needs of new businesses and residents. • Cohesive Parks and Green Space The confluence area and significant crossstreets of Melrose-Oak Park and Irishtown should be developed to provide a balance of higher quality open space and neighborhood-serving social gathering and recreation nodes.

Transit-Oriented/Complete Streets The recommended design of Manchester Street works within the existing roadway section but proposes several improvements that promote a compact and walkable streetscape character and multimodal capability. These recommendations include access management techniques such as the consolidation of curb cuts and development of new intersection geometries that improve safety and reduce vehicular and pedestrian conflict points. Conceptual Framework Plan

Collaborative The priority improvements outlined within this study address the most pressing public infrastructure needs of the corridor and remove barriers to private investment that would otherwise go unmet. No single developer or project can be expected to undertake the scale of planning, design, and capital improvements required to implement the full range of recommendations. The achievement of the vision and qualities contained within the conceptual framework plan will require ongoing collaboration among a wider range of affected stakeholders to establish the prioritization, sequencing, and funding of future improvements. Corridor stakeholders, neighborhood interests, and future developers will need to work with city, state, and federal agencies to build consensus for future improvements and quality-of-life infrastructure.

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

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Conceptual Framework Plan

Context-Sensitive/Neighborhood-Sensitive

Healthier Ecosystems/Cohesive Greenspace

Transit-Oriented/Complete Streets

Compact and Walkable

Multimodal 34

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Context-Sensitive/Neighborhood-Sensitive

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

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Restorative

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Sustainable

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

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Transit-Oriented/Complete Streets

BEFORE

AFTER

38

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Transit-Oriented/Complete Streets

BEFORE

AFTER

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

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Collaborative

Kentucky Transportation Cabinet

40

Utility Company Interests

RJ Corman Railroad

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Alternatives Analysis The alternatives development for streetscape and trail improvements was influenced by many factors including the defining principles, public involvement, and previous and concurrent studies for the area. The Distillery District Master Plan laid the framework for the proposed development within the District shaping the program of required public improvements. The Town Branch Trail Master Plan provided context for trail connectivity and other desired considerations. The Rupp Arena, Arts and Entertainment District Plan provided the perspective for how the adjacent district will develop and provided the momentum for a cohesive and continuous green space to connect from the District to Downtown with Town Branch Commons.

Alternatives Discussion The base roadway improvements along the project corridor are essentially the same for Alternatives 1 to 3. Manchester Street is shown as a two-lane roadway with turn lanes and traffic control enhancements at select intersections. Because of the width restrictions at the confluence area combined with other competing corridor interests, it was concluded that a three-lane roadway section is not feasible. In order to proactively address potential traffic concerns along the corridor that will result from the redevelopment initiative, an access management approach is recommended. This approach will require consideration for existing driveways and access for future development to be restricted to primary intersections. Turn lanes would be provided at those intersections to support the turning movements. A brief discussion and outline of features unique to each alternative are described in the following text and subsequent exhibits on the following pages.

No Action Alternative The no action alternative or no-build scenario would leave the Manchester corridor unimproved and without trail connectivity. This alternative does not address the current infrastructure and neighborhood needs along the corridor and does not support the redevelopment initiative for the District.

Alternative No. 1 - Town Branch Creek Trail

Alternative No. 2 - Manchester Street Trail

Alternative No. 3 - Manchester Street and Pepper Trail

The Town Branch Creek Trail Alternative separates the multiuse trail from Manchester Street throughout the majority of the corridor and maximizes the proximal placement of the trail with the creek in the East and West Districts.

The Manchester Street Trail Alternative combines bike lane facilities in the East District and a multiuse trail adjacent to the north side of Manchester Street in the West District.

The Manchester Street and Pepper Trail Alternative features a multiuse trail adjacent to the roadway throughout the majority of the corridor. The trail for this alternative is located on the south side of Manchester Street in the East District and on the north side in the West District. The trail would follow Town Branch Creek through a large portion of the Pepper Distillery Property where the natural section of the stream currently exists.

Features - Alternative No. 2 Features - Alternative No. 1

• Two-lane roadway with turn lanes at select intersections.

• Two-lane roadway with turn lanes at select intersections.

• Bike lanes in East District.

• Relocates existing driveway and access for future development to improve sight distance at the confluence area.

• Multiuse trail in West District.

Features - Alternative No. 3

• Intermittent on-street parking.

• Relocates existing driveway and access for future development to improve sight distance at the confluence area.

• Two lane roadway with turn lanes at select intersections.

• Amenity strip inlcuding elements such as street lighting, plantings, and rain gardens, etc.

��� Intermittent on-street parking.

• Relocates existing driveway and access for future development to improve sight distance at the confluence area.

• Improvements to the existing storm drainage system.

• Amenity strip inlcuding elements such as street lighting, plantings, and rain gardens, etc.

• Private loop trail for around the Pepper Distillery distilling plant building.

• Improvements to the existing storm drainage system.

• Amenity strip inlcuding elements such as street lighting, plantings, and rain gardens, etc.

• Private loop trail for entire Pepper Distillery property.

• Improvements to the existing storm drainage system.

• Maximizes trail visibility along the street corridor.

• Private loop trail around the Pepper Distillery distilling plant building.

• Maximizes trail and creek interaction. • Provides direct access to the trail from Melrose-Oak Park. The following distinct components are required to facilitate the construction of this alternative. • Relocation of active RJ Corman rail line, a railroad bridge, and modifications to the existing rail line. • Relocate/Enhance a segment of Town Branch Creek in the East District. • Enhance a segment of Town Branch Creek in the West District.

• Provides direct access to the trail from Melrose-Oak Park. The following distinct components are required to facilitate the construction of this alternative. • Relocate existing vehicular rail crossing to improve sight distance. • Significant Land/Building Acquisition for two properties. • Requires further environmental study for the relocated access road.

• Intermittent on-street parking.

• Maximizes trail interaction in the West District with natural stream segment. • Maximizes trail visibility along the street corridor in the East District. • Provides direct access to the trail from Melrose-Oak Park and Irishtown. The following distinct components are required to facilitate the construction of this alternative.

• Relocate existing vehicular rail crossing to improve sight distance.

• Enhance a segment of Town Branch Creek in the West District.

• Add a pedestrian/rail crossing. • Add a tunnel for the trail under the Norfolk Southern railroad.

• Relocate existing vehicular rail crossing to improve sight distance.

• Significant Land/Building Acquisition for four properties.

• Significant Land/Building Acquisition for one property.

• Requires further environmental study for the relocated access road, off-road trail in the East District, and off-road trail in the West District.

• Requires further environmental study for the relocated access road and off-road trail in the West District.

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

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Alternative No. 1 - Town Branch Creek Trail

1

2 6

3

7

4

5

1

1

1

4 6

Legend - Town Branch Creek Trail

Typical Section

Roadway Improvements Streetscape Public Pedestrian and Bicycle Trail Improvements Private Pedestrian and Bicycle Trail Improvements Town Branch Creek Stream Relocation Railroad Relocation Key Notes: 1 Significant Property Acquisition Required 2 Rail Yard and Rail Line Modifications 3 Railroad Tunnel Required 4 Further Environmental Investigation Required 5 At-Grade Rail/Trail Crossing-Safety Consideration 6 Provides Creek/Trail Interaction 7 Provides Trail Connection to Neighborhood

4

Opinion of Probable Cost

Evaluation Criteria Evaluation Scale

East District Description Roadway Streetscape Off-Road Trail Railroad Stream Restoration Env. Remediation ROW Acquisition Public Art/Amenity

Less

QTY 2,130 2,050 2,250 885 2,100 2 3 1

Unit Cost $ 1,015 $ 720 $ 840 $ 920 $ 360 $ 125,000 $ 530,000 $ 300,000

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Total Cost 2,161,950 1,476,000 1,890,000 814,200 756,000 250,000 1,590,000 300,000

Description Roadway Streetscape Off-Road Trail Railroad Stream Restoration Env. Remediation ROW Acquisition Public Art/Amenity

Implementable • Cost • Land Acquisition • Environmental Impacts

Quality of Life/Quality of Place • Integration of Creek and Trail • Safety

West District Existing

Proposed

42

1

QTY 3,240 2,920 2,180 120 900 2 2 1

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Unit Cost 1,275 720 400 1,570 250 125,000 240,000 220,000

Subtotal Professional Services Contingency Total

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Total Cost 4,131,000 2,102,400 872,000 188,400 225,000 250,000 480,000 220,000

$ 17,706,950 $ 2,651,100 $ 3,534,700 $ 23,892,750

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

• Neighborhood/Cultural Sensitivity

Catalytic Impact • Public Support • Other Initiatives • Market Need

1

5

More


Alternative No. 2 - Manchester Street Trail

3

4

1

4

1 3 2

Legend - Town Branch Creek Trail

Typical Section

Roadway Improvements Streetscape

Evaluation Scale

East District Description Roadway Streetscape Off-Road Trail Railroad Stream Restoration Env. Remediation ROW Acquisition Public Art/Amenity

Public Pedestrian and Bicycle Trail Improvements Private Pedestrian and Bicycle Trail Improvements Town Branch Creek

Key Notes: 1 Significant Property Acquisition Required 2 Further Environmental Investigation Required 3 Provides Trail Connection to Neighborhood 4 Trail Connects to Bike Lanes in East District

Evaluation Criteria

Opinion of Probable Cost

Less

QTY 2,130 2,050 0 85 0 1 0 1

Unit Cost $ 1,035 $ 720 $ 250 $ 500 $ $ 50,000 $ $ 300,000

Total Cost $ 2,204,550 $ 1,476,000 $ $ 42,500 $ $ 50,000 $ $ 300,000

Proposed

Description Roadway Streetscape Off-Road Trail Railroad Stream Restoration Env. Remediation ROW Acquisition Public Art/Amenity

5

More

Implementable • Cost • Land Acquisition • Environmental Impacts

Quality of Life/Quality of Place • Integration of Creek and Trail • Safety

West District Existing

1

QTY 3,240 2,920 0 120 0 1 1 1

Unit Cost $ 1,295 $ 720 $ 400 $ 1,570 $ $ 50,000 $ 170,000 $ 220,000

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Total Cost 4,195,800 2,102,400 188,400 50,000 170,000 220,000

• Neighborhood/Cultural Sensitivity

Catalytic Impact • Public Support • Other Initiatives • Market Need

Subtotal $ 10,999,650 Professional Services $ 1,650,000 Contingency $ 2,200,100 Total $14,849,750

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

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Alternative No. 3 - Manchester Street and Pepper Trail

4 1 1

4

4

2 1 2 3

Legend - Town Branch Creek Trail

Typical Section

Roadway Improvements Streetscape

Evaluation Scale

East District Description Roadway Streetscape Off-Road Trail Railroad Stream Restoration Env. Remediation ROW Acquisition Public Art/Amenity

Public Pedestrian and Bicycle Trail Improvements Private Pedestrian and Bicycle Trail Improvements Town Branch Creek Private Sidewalk for Outside Cafes Key Notes: 1 Significant Property Acquisition Required 2 Further Environmental Investigation Required 3 Provides Creek/Trail Interaction 4 Provides Trail Connection to Neighborhood

Evaluation Criteria

Opinion of Probable Cost

Less

QTY 2,130 2,050 0 85 0 1 0 1

Unit Cost $ 1,015 $ 710 $ 250 $ 500 $ $ 50,000 $ $ 300,000

Total Cost $ 2,161,950 $ 1,455,500 $ $ 42,500 $ $ 50,000 $ $ 300,000

Description Roadway Streetscape Off-Road Trail Railroad Stream Restoration Env. Remediation ROW Acquisition Public Art/Amenity

QTY 3,240 2,920 1,450 120 1,200 2 1 1

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Unit Cost 1,285 720 400 1,570 250 125,000 170,000 220,000

Subtotal Professional Services Contingency Total

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Total Cost 4,163,400 2,102,400 580,000 188,400 300,000 250,000 170,000 220,000

$ 11,984,150 $ 1,797,700 $ 2,396,900 $ 16,178,750

Proposed

44

• Cost • Land Acquisition • Environmental Impacts

Quality of Life/Quality of Place • Integration of Creek and Trail • Safety

West District Existing

Implementable

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

• Neighborhood/Cultural Sensitivity

Catalytic Impact • Public Support • Other Initiatives • Market Need

1

5

More


Evaluation Matrix The evaluation matrix shown to the right was developed from feedback provided by the stakeholder committee and based on the physical conditions investigation and corridor analysis. The matrix contains three primary criterion that are used to rank the project alternatives: Implementable, Quality of Life/Quality of Place, and Catalytic Impact.

Alternative No. 2

Alternative No. 1

Less

1

5

Evaluation Scale

Evaluation Scale

Evaluation Scale

Evaluation Criteria

Alternative No. 3

More

25

Less

1

5

More

25

Less

1

5

More

31

Implementable Implementable The implementable criterion includes factors that influence whether the alternative is more readily implementable in supporting redevelopment interest in the District. • Cost - Potential to lengthen project schedule while acquiring additional funding. • Land Acquisition - Potential to lengthen project schedule, increase cost, delay or stop the project. • Environmental Impacts - Potential to lengthen the project schedule, increase permitting, and increase project costs. Quality of Life/Quality of Place The quality of life and quality of place criterion includes factors that influence whether the alternative has the ability to influence the experience and quality of the environment for patrons and residents of the District. • Integration of Creek and Trail - Potential to increase interaction between people and the natural environment effects the experience and quality of place. • Safety - Potential conflicts between pedestrian, cyclists, motor vehicles, and trains can impact the quality of life. • Neighborhood/Cultural Sensitivity - Potential to influence the surrounding neighborhood and cultural resources effects the overall quality of the District. Catalytic Impact The catalytic impact criterion includes factors that influence whether the project has the ability to positively influence not only the district but surrounding areas and initiatives. • Public Support - Public perception of the alternative will influence support for the District initiative as a whole. • Other Initiatives - The extent to which the alternative compliments other parallel initiatives maximizes the level of overall project impact. • Market Need - Implementation approach of the alternative reinforces the redevelopment potential and marketability of the District.

• Cost • Land Acquisition • Environmental Impacts Quality of Life/Quality of Place • Integration of Creek and Trail • Safety • Neighborhood/Cultural Sensitivity Catalytic Impact • Public Support • Other Initiatives • Market Need

Opinion of Probable Cost East District Description Roadway Streetscape Off-Road Trail Railroad Stream Restoration Environmental Remediation ROW Acquisition Public Art/Amenity

QTY 2,130 LF 2,050 LF 2,250 LF 885 LF 2,100 LF 2 EA 3 EA 1 LS

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Unit Cost 1,015 720 840 920 360 125,000 530,000 300,000

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Total Cost 2,161,950 1,476,000 1,890,000 814,200 756,000 250,000 1,590,000 300,000

QTY 2,130 LF 2,050 LF 0 LF 85 LF 0 LF 1 EA 0 EA 1 LS

Unit Cost $ 1,035 $ 720 $ 250 $ 500 $ $ 50,000 $ $ 300,000

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Total Cost 2,204,550 1,476,000 42,500 50,000 300,000

QTY 2,130 LF 2,050 LF 0 LF 85 LF 0 LF 1 EA 0 EA 1 LS

Unit Cost $ 1,015 $ 710 $ 250 $ 500 $ $ 50,000 $ $ 300,000

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Total Cost 2,161,950 1,455,500 42,500 50,000 300,000

QTY 3,240 LF 2,920 LF 2,180 LF 120 LF 900 LF 2 EA 2 EA 1 LS

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Unit Cost 1,275 720 400 1,570 250 125,000 240,000 220,000

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Total Cost 4,131,000 2,102,400 872,000 188,400 225,000 250,000 480,000 220,000

QTY 3,240 LF 2,920 LF 0 LF 120 LF 0 LF 1 EA 1 EA 1 LS

Unit Cost $ 1,295 $ 720 $ 400 $ 1,570 $ $ 50,000 $ 170,000 $ 220,000

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Total Cost 4,195,800 2,102,400 188,400 50,000 170,000 220,000

QTY 3,240 LF 2,920 LF 1,450 LF 120 LF 1,200 LF 2 EA 1 EA 1 LS

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Unit Cost 1,285 720 400 1,570 250 125,000 170,000 220,000

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Total Cost 4,163,400 2,102,400 580,000 188,400 300,000 250,000 170,000 220,000

West District Description Roadway Streetscape Off-Road Trail Railroad Stream Restoration Environmental Remediation ROW Acquisition Public Art/Amenity Subtotal Professional Services Contingency Total

$ 17,706,950 $ 2,651,100 $ 3,534,700 $ 23,892,750

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

$ 10,999,650 $ 1,650,000 $ 2,200,100 $14,849,750

$ 11,984,150 $ 1,797,700 $ 2,396,900 $ 16,178,750

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Additional Improvement Considerations In addition to the basic infrastructure elements included with the alternatives as previously described, there are additional improvement considerations within the District. The following describes additional improvement opportunities that have the potential to significantly influence the viability of the District.

FEMA Floodplain and Town Branch Watershed One of the most significant impediments to development in the District is the FEMA floodplain. While the East District has minimal constraints with the mapped floodplain, the West District’s developable area is almost entirely encumbered by the regulatory floodplain. As a result, the development of the Pepper Distillery property is severely restricted. The historic designation of this property does allow for some exemptions to the existing structures; however, new construction would be prohibited without special use permits and flood protection measures.

Floodplains are determined based on the hydrology of the watershed and the hydraulics of the stream. The hydrology establishes the flow in the stream while the hydraulics determine how the stream conveys the flow. The hydrologic study for Town Branch was completed in the mid-1970s using generalized equations to develop the design flow for determination of floodplain. The flow results in a floodplain with water depth ranging from 5 to 7 feet above Manchester Street between the confluence and the Pepper Distillery Bonded Warehouse. To better understand the ramifications of the floodplain within the West District, the Consultant Team completed a background review of the FEMA floodplain. Multiple sources suggest the existing FEMA flood study design flow rate is conservatively high resulting in excessive floodplain impacts to the West District. This information was based on discussions with other engineers involved with flood studies in the watershed, an analysis from the United States Army Corps of Engineers, and anecdotal evidence from a representative of LFUCG’s Division of Engineering for the May 1997 flood event. In order for the West District to maximize its fullest potential, there is a need to update the FEMA floodplain to better reflect the actual existing conditions and reduce the floodplain constraint where appropriate. Revising the floodplain map requires a detailed approach that meets FEMA’s exacting requirements. Because of the long lead time for FEMA approval, this item requires immediate consideration.

Town Branch Watershed-Based Plan The City and public have widely recognized the importance of Town Branch Creek as a community asset. As a result, there are on-going efforts with the Town Branch Commons plan to resurrect or celebrate Town Branch Creek in the heart of downtown. While this effort offers the potential to forever transform downtown, it is important to recognize that a natural experience with Town Branch Creek already exists within the West District. This natural stream corridor has already been successfully leveraged for completed segments of the Town Branch Trail largely through the vision of Town Branch Trail, Inc. Unfortunately, this natural segment of Town Branch Creek is in distress and listed as a 303(d) list impaired stream. In addition to flooding, the effects of urbanization within the watershed result is water quality problems including loss of habitat, increased water temperatures, and sedimentation among others. One of the documented causes of the stream impairment is attributed to fecal coliform. The presence of fecal coliform in Town Branch Creek may indicate contamination with fecal material from humans or animals, through the droppings of birds and mammals, from storm runoff and/or human sewage. Large quantities of fecal coliform bacteria in water may indicate a higher risk of pathogens being present in the water. Since the resulting trail and streetscape may draw the public to the stream, signs indicating the health risks posed by swimming or wading in the stream may be appropriate.

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A watershed-based plan developed for Town Branch Creek would include a holistic strategy to address identified issues with revitalization initiatives aimed at improving the overall health of the stream and the ecosystem it supports. The WatershedBased Plan and assorted improvements could not only benefit the District area but also Town Branch Commons, which will be faced with similar challenges for opening of the culvert system and natural restoration of the stream.

Utility Infrastructure Upgrades Coordination meetings with utility providers included discussion on existing infrastructure and corresponding capacity, relocation opportunities, feedback on cost and schedule implications, and the required process for initialization of the determined utility improvements. The following capacity concerns were identified through the utility coordination effort: • Columbia Gas of Kentucky - Must evaluate the capacity of existing low pressure gas main in the East District with proposed development improvements to determine future facility needs. • Kentucky American Water - Will consolidate two old existing parallel water mains with proposed water main that is sized to serve the proposed District. • Kentucky Utilities - Will likely upgrade two separate existing 4 kV systems after the required electrical load has been determined. • Windstream Communication - Will consider upgrading the existing system with fiber-optic lines throughout the corridor. A final determination of required utility upgrades is dependent on developer(s) providing the specific capacity needs and planned uses for the proposed development. The Distillery District Master Plan shows illustrations that remove overhead utilities form the Manchester Street corridor. To help LFUCG understand the implications of a relocation plan, utility providers were consulted to understand cost and schedule implications of the various approaches to be considered. The following relocation strategies where discussed: burial of the overhead utilities, rerouting the overhead utilities to the rear of the development properties, and phased relocations. The subsequent information was derived from the utility company discussions: • Burial of the overhead electrical distribution and communications lines results in high cost, but improved aesthetics. Underground utilities will require abovegrade equipment similar to what is now visible along the South Limestone corridor. Because of right-of-way constraints, abovegrade infrastructure will likely have to be placed on private property in easements. The narrow right-of-way will also result in a highly congested underground utility corridor. Design exceptions for utility separation clearance will be required if the electrical transmission line is relocated underground. The following costs for burial of overhead utilities were developed collaboratively with the impacted utility providers: – East District Electrical Distribution and Communication $3,830,000 – West District Electrical Distribution and Communication $3,585,000 – East District Electrical Transmission - $4,405,000

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

• Relocating the overhead utilities to the rear of the development properties can be problematic because of the significant number of required utility service drops. The adjacent neighborhood and proposed development limit the feasibility of an overhead relocation routing alignment because of required easement clearance and separation. The scope of required utility improvements has the potential to greatly influence the overall project schedule and will not be fully understood until key project agreements are in place. The utility providers routinely require that a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) be in place before initiating internal planning and budgeting activities. To accommodate efforts to facilitate such agreements, preliminary roadway designs will be required to help support definition of the corridor for scoping purposes.

Sanitary Sewer Improvements Within the District, the sanitary sewer system has both nearand long-term improvement needs. The most pressing need involves sewerability for the West District which includes the significant proposed development on the Pepper Distillery property (see storm and sanitary sewer exhibit on page 30 and 31). While an existing gravity sewer currently crosses this property, it is very shallow and problematic in addressing sewerability needs for future development. Because of elevation constraints, wastewater from the Pepper Distillery property will require pumping to the existing trunk system north of Manchester Street and the RJ Corman Railroad. The scale of the planned development will require a Class “C” pump station (75 GPM to 999 GPM) to be constructed as defined by LFUCG guidelines. The location of the pump station will be influenced by the significant floodplain extents as pump stations are required to be protected from the 100-year base flood elevation. Given the constraints within the District, a minimum allowance of $300,000 is recommended for the pump station construction. The shallow sewer, which currently crosses the site, is located within the footprint of a planned future parking garage. As such, relocation should be considered in conjunction with any planned sewer improvements in the West District. A reoccurring SSO is located adjacent to the Town Branch Creek. With the goal of bringing people in closer proximity to the natural stream environment, measures to improve water quality by eliminating this SSO will need to be taken. Consent Decree Remedial Measures projects are also planned for the University of Kentucky trunk sewer system, which converges near the confluence area. Additionally, both the East and West Districts feature aerial sanitary sewer crossings. These crossings impact the aesthetics of the corridor. Because of the service area upstream of the East District aerial crossing, an infrastructure failure at this location would result in a major impact to the overall Town Branch sewershed. Given the complexities of the sanitary infrastructure needs within the District, a comprehensive evaluation should be considered to address the overall sanitary sewer system needs throughout the corridor.


Stream Enhancements

Stream Revitalization

This section explores the stream enhancement opportunities available within the Distillery District corridor. Generally, the proposed District improvements will enhance the Town Branch Creek corridor as an urban greenway with an attractive streetscape that enhances livability and provides opportunities to connect people with a historic water resource that is one of the most important assets in the District. The stream itself can serve as an “authentic amenity” or “signature feature”, providing a sense of identity to the District.

Varying levels of opportunities exist for directly improving Town Branch Creek. In general, the terms restoration, enhancement, and stabilization are often used to describe stream improvements.

Existing Conditions This section of Town Branch Creek, a perennial stream, is located in a highly developed area, primarily with industrial and commercial land uses. The effects of the highly urbanized watershed on Town Branch Creek are evident. The stream is considered impaired and also suffers from physical impairment because of channel modification, urban stormwater runoff, poor in-stream substrate, and little riparian zone. Progressive filling, site development and construction of roads and railway lines have resulted in the loss of nearly all of the natural floodplains. Because Town Branch Creek cannot access a floodplain, the stream carries more energy, causing bank erosion and channel downcutting. It also carries a higher pollutant load downstream during storm events and may have reduced baseflow, which is detrimental to aquatic life during drier conditions. The frequency and magnitude of flooding is increased by the high percent of impervious surface in the watershed, leading to frequent and/or severe flooding events of higher magnitudes.

• Restore - Restore a stream means to recreate meanders, stabilize soil, and install gently sloping stream banks. Stream restoration is not always possible due to constraints such as topography, property ownership, utility crossings, structures, or roadways. • Enhance - Enhance a stream is to attempt meanders and gentle slopes where possible and to stabilize the stream banks. Restoration and enhancement can include the installation of in-stream structures to improve stability and aquatic habitat. • Stabilize - Stabilize a stream is simply to secure the stream banks from further erosion because constraints limit other degrees of stream protection.

Ideally, any sections of Town Branch Creek flowing within culverts should be “daylighted” or removed from the closed culvert and returned to an open stream channel. Daylighting streams is a recognized way to restore stream ecology, function, and aesthetics through improving adjacent floodplain and riparian zone.

In-Stream Features There is currently lack of variable flow regime and longitudinal streambed profile that supports aquatic life. In-stream structures can be installed within the stream in locations where pattern cannot be improved. These structures are used to repair or enhance stream functions and habitat, provide the diversity of bed features critical to stream health, and improve stream stability. In-stream structures such as vanes, cross-vanes, j-hook vanes, constructed riffles, boulder clusters, and wing deflectors provide functions such aeration, energy dissipation that reduces erosion, and creation of niche habitats for aquatic organisms. In this setting, structures would likely be constructed with large boulders. In-stream structures can also provide opportunities for public access and enjoyment.

Stream Dimensions/Pattern/Profile/Substrate Creating a bankfull floodplain improves the dimensions of an incised/entrenched channel. Additional improvements to channel dimensions include design of an appropriate low flow or baseflow channel that is stable, transports sediment, and holds water to sustain aquatic life in low flow or drier conditions. Steep banks should be graded to gentler, less erodible slope and stabilized with erosion control blanket and vegetation.

Stream with Wetland

Elements considered for improvement specifically related to stream restoration include the riparian zone, floodplain, channel dimensions, channel pattern, channel longitudinal profile, in-stream features, and substrate for aquatic habitat.

Riparian Zone

Existing Stream Section

(or greater) storm events. Where possible, a bankfull floodplain or bench should be constructed on one or both sides of Town Branch Creek. During storm events, water spreads over the bench floodplain, slowing the water and reducing bank stress. The floodplain bench has the capacity to store some water in designed depressions and features such as vernal pools or wetlands within the floodplain and provides biogeochemical functions that improve water quality and stream ecology. These features can enhance the overall stream ecology as well as provide unique aesthetic opportunities. For example, opportunities for passive recreation can be added to the bankfull floodplain, such as including sections of trail or greenway within this floodplain, bringing users closer to the water resource.

Riparian zones are significant because they provide many water quality and habitat functions such as soil stabilization, food and shelter for animals, and natural biofilters that protect streams from excessive sedimentation, polluted surface runoff, and erosion. Riparian trees provide shade to streams, regulating stream water temperature, and therefore dissolved oxygen levels. Additionally, the riparian zones improve the aesthetic value of streams and provide green space. Improvements to the Town Branch riparian area should include widening and diversifying the riparian zone, connecting to green space, and water quality features and public access points.

Floodplain Currently, water does not access a floodplain during bankfull

Where feasible, appropriate meandering pattern can be designed for sections of Town Branch Creek where land is available. Meanders set up the natural riffle-pool habitat sequence important to energy dissipation and the support of aquatic life. Likewise, a diversity of streambed longitudinal profile is important for dissipating energy and providing niche habitats needed for a variety of aquatic organisms throughout their life cycles. Within this project, installation of in-stream structures, described below, is the main mechanism for improving streambed profile that is proposed. Currently, the banks along Town Branch Creek are steep and include several outfall structures that are perched above the stream. These banks should be graded and stabilized and outfall structures should be modified to allow for a gentle entrance into the stream. In addition, channels with step pools/other instream structures or vegetated swales can be utilized to move water into Town Branch Creek from any stormwater outfalls that remain within the corridor after redevelopment. Several springs and seeps are present along Town Branch Creek. The stabilization of banks around these features is needed, but opportunities exist to enhance these areas as unique environmental and historical features.

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

West District Stream Enhancement Plan

West District Stream Enhancement Plan

Analysis and Conclusion Even with the adverse impacts of urbanization on Town Branch Creek, there are numerous stream restoration opportunities within the watershed and in the District area. These fully implemented opportunities will help to restore the riparian zone adjacent to the stream, rehabilitate the stream qualities along with creating aquatic habitat within the corridor, and ultimately educate the public on the significance of water quality and quantity-related concerns. The Framework Plan detailed on page 33 and the public space discussion on the following page highlights how beneficial enhancement of the Town Branch Stream Corridor can be cohesively melded into redevelopment plans for the District.

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Public Space

Melrose-Oak Park Recreation Area

The Confluence

The Conceptual Framework Plan depicts a variety of public spaces that are intended to enhance the aesthetic qualities and livability of the District, mitigate the impacts of industrial uses and the rail lines, and restore functional integrity of the Town Branch Riparian Corridor.

The redevelopment of the current LFUCG Recycling Center could feature a larger and more flexible outdoor recreation area, playfield, and community pavilion or viewing area that buffers the adjacent rail line and serves both the passive and active needs of residents throughout the District. The proposed greenway along the existing RJ Corman Rail Line could feature a naturalized stream channel that reduces stormwater runoff, promotes sound attenuation, and increases the ecological diversity of the corridor.

The Confluence Area is both a physical and perceptual gateway between the East and West District located at the intersection of the Norfolk Southern Railway overpass, Town Branch Creek, and Manchester Street. Significant filling and encroachment of the stream corridor have diminished functional and aesthetic qualities of the creek, channelized tributary streams, and increased the flood potential in the area.

Gunpowder Springs Depot The former Trotter Brothers Gunpowder Mill (1812 to 1833) stands out among a wide variety of late eighteenth and early nineteenth century industries that located along the Town Branch Creek because of the abundance of corridor’s spring water. The framework plan borrows the Gunpowder Factory’s legacy to identify the location for the potential development of a village green and multimodal hub at the midpoint of the East District and the crossroads of Irishtown’s Willard and Perry Streets. The concept depicts a sloping plaza that would cut down through more modern fills toward the original grade of the creek. Mixed-use building would frame the view to an overlook and possible dinner train boarding platform.

The framework plan shows the potential for a modest realignment of Manchester Street and the integration of Pyramid Park on the east side of the railway. The west side depicts the potential for an expanded greenway network and the development of a trailhead park and gathering space that could feature an outdoor performance and viewing area along the north bank of Town Branch Creek.

Confluence Area - Conceptual Framework Plan

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Public Art

Public Art and the Essence of the District

Moving into Action

Public art can play a unique and critical role in enhancing the aesthetic quality and livability of the District

Nature and Industry are intertwined throughout this the District, there is no discernible separation between the natural world and industry. The stream and the springs brought the town to this site and supported the distillery industry. In turn, the distillery industry left its mark on the surrounding nature with large structures and stream bank stabilization. Now, as time passes, nature is reclaiming many areas of the district. The public art program should reflect not only the parallel worlds of nature and industry but also the interactions between them.

The public art recommendations in this plan are organized into two parts.

• Public art can reveal and express the essential character of the District, especially the symbiotic relationship of natural environment and industry. Public art can bring a contemporary voice to the understanding of this place. • A body of public art projects that are consistently focused on environmental and industrial aspects of the District (what this study calls the “Greenway” and the “Greyway”) can create a sense of cohesiveness across the many improvements (infrastructure, private development, public spaces, environmental remediation) that will be made over time. • Public art can lend an authenticity to the District that is rooted in the character and history of the place, as translated by the voices of artists. • Public art can create public excitement about the District, strengthening the overall impact of the project.

• Greyway and Greenway The interconnected quality of nature and industry suggests a concept of two interconnected paths, the Greyway and the Greenway, that will serve as literal and conceptual spines for public art. The Greyway is connected to the existing man-made infrastructure of the roadway corridor, following Manchester Street. The Greenway is connected to the stream corridor and includes the natural features of the site as it follows the Town Branch Creek. • Time A public art strategy is also proposed that works on several time scales. It works now, as many parts could be implemented immediately and inexpensively to create an artistic presence in the District before any new infrastructure is added, or before any new development occurs. It will also grow also as the plan advances; every time that infrastructure and private development takes a step forward ideas in the art plan can be brought forward. The strategy defines the ingredients of each layer of the site and looks at the temporal possibilities for implementation now and in the future.

The first part, “greenway” and “greyway,” demonstrates how the essence of the District can be conveyed through two threads of public art projects. Every project would be asked to respond to one of two conditions; the streams and springs that attracted development in the first place, or the remnants of the industrial community that depended on the water. Artists could work in a variety of visual media, from sculptural installations to projects integrated into landscape and infrastructure, using light and color to text and symbols. The images on the “greenway” and “greyway” pages illustrate how projects that are commissioned independently can add up to a collection of artworks that are in conversation with themselves and with visitors to the District. By focusing on these threads, the public art initiative can contribute to the District’s unique place character and create a set of experiences that cannot be found anywhere else. The second part, which includes sections on “immediate projects,” “infrastructure”, and “public places,” indicates how public art can be connected to the investment that is likely to occur in the District. “Immediate projects” could be undertaken starting now, while further planning and predevelopment activities are underway, to send early messages about the changes that are to come. Projects for “Infrastructure” and “public places” would be related to future improvements that are made to streets, trails, parks, plazas, environmental management of Town Branch Creek, utilities undergrounding and a potential parking garage proposed

on the Pepper Distillery site. Artists could be asked to lead the design of public space and infrastructure improvements. They can be asked to develop artworks that are integrated into the design of public spaces or infrastructure. Artists can also develop site-specific artworks that are developed concurrently with the design and construction of public spaces or infrastructure.

Funding and Management Funding for public art could come from many sources. “Immediate action” projects, which would be of lower budgets, could be funded by the entity that is set up to promote and develop the District, and could draw on the public art/amenity funds proposed in the preliminary budgets. Artworks related to infrastructure and public places could be funded from future expenditures from TIF public improvements budget or by private investments made in the same area. An annual budget of $75,000 would be ample to stage temporary projects as well as small-scale, medium-term improvements. These projects should be curated, as opposed to themed, in order to sustain an ongoing effort of artistic exploration and placemaking that grows from these two fundamental characteristics of the District. This would require a level of artistic direction, which could be provided by a curator in residence, a curatorial consultant, and art planning consultant, or an artist, with implementation managed on various levels by an experienced organization such as LexArts. The artistic director’s key role would be to help District developers, public agencies, and design teams to identify key opportunities for public art projects (short-term, long-term, public space, infrastructure) and develop strategies for implementing them.

Photos: Spencer Finch, The River that Runs Both Ways Janet Zweig, Forms of Exchange Stacy Levy Buster Simpson

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Public Art/Greenway The Greenway The Greenway offers an immersive, sensory experience. It follows Town Branch Creek and seeks out the more natural aspects of the District. Projects about ecological processes and natural phenomena will play a large role in how the design is transmitted throughout this corridor. The experience of the Greenway will be more subtle than the experience of the Greyway. While Greyway projects might be bold and vivid, experienced in a few moments across the dimensions of speed and distance, the Greenway will be more about patience, exploration and discovery, and about revealing hidden processes and change over time. The Greenway will reveal and celebrate the temporary and temporal changes of nature. Circumstances such as weather, water cycles, and the rhythmic registration of the seasons could be part of the investigation into the nature of the site. But nature is not alone in this corridor, and the projects will take advantage of the overlay of nature with the industrial landscape.

Water features and upland landscapes can feature artworks that illuminate the movement/texture of water and landscape. The stormwater management system includes not only drains, pipes, and outfalls but also gutters and spouts that collect water from buildings, which can be artistic elements. The Town Branch Creek corridor can include places to view or engage with the water.

Artists can explore the interface/contrast between infrastructure and natural systems. Artist designed sculptural scaffolds can guide topiary forms that take many years to grow. Traditional artworks, like murals, can mimic natural process. Artist-led marking projects can engage communities in rediscovering and revealing hidden natural systems. Artworks can reveal or highlight natural phenomena that are not easily visible (air currents, water flows, topography).

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

The resulting art and design components will be more material than those of the Greyway. Art projects could be free-standing and temporary art projects could have a physicality and presence that is in contrast to the Greyway’s more atmospheric site treatments of highlighted and colored surfaces. The industrial infrastructure will be located, preserved, and celebrated as artifacts in the stream corridor.


Public Art/Greyway The Greyway Perception of the site; The Greyway is about creating a place identity, a collection of elements that signal to the visitors “you are here.” The design of the Greyway creates a signature legibility that defines the District for people who are passing through in cars or on foot and for people who are hanging out at Gunpowder Plaza, and other gathering places. The Greyway concentrates more on nonmaterial ways of creating a place of interest and a visual identity, such as lighting, painting, and enveloping. It has intrinsically bolder, faster moves of color, light, and typography overlaid on the existing infrastructure. It has embedded elements that give a definite sense of place and passage through the District.

Lighting can give new life to the District’s industrial remnants. Bollards can be used as visual and spatial structuring devices, as well as functional elements. Color can enliven the streetscape and also highlight the beauty of its simple forms. The District’s industrial remnants can be given new life with paint and color.

The Greyway begins as a temporal introduction to the site, the first immediate step to giving the District a sense of place and a visual identity. It can be implemented early on in the development process utilizing the existing situation and structures while the overall public infrastructure and private development secures funding. These interactions can be enjoyed until something more lasting should take hold in the future of the site The Greyway would be more focused on cultural artifacts that show the industrial character of the site as well as its relationship to the natural environment. Because of its relationship with the existing industrial structures, the design of the Greyway has a slower scale of change. It is not reacting to the ongoing variations of nature, but rather works to unify the disparate industrial elements, giving an overall connectedness to the site particularly at night.

Basic infrastructure, such as street lighting, parking lot lighting, and electrical infrastructure, can be reimagined in the language of color, graphics, and simple, functional forms described elsewhere. Color, typography, and icons can be composed into a visual language that plays a dominant role in establishing the character of the District. Seating can enhance the use of public spaces such as the proposed Gunpowder Plaza. The windows of the former distillery buildings can feature artworks that make them places of discovery and surprise. Traditional art approaches, such as muralism, can be expanded to include sites on industrial buildings. Utility and storage buildings can be given decorative exterior treatments.

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Public Art/Immediate Opportunities Small Steps, Big Vision The public art component of the District will have the most impact if it is organized as a series of ongoing actions, starting with small but smart and surprising interventions, and building towards more substantive pieces integrated into design, development, and infrastructure projects. There are numerous ways that public art could have an impact on the visual character of the District now, before any long-term investments are made. Artists can infiltrate the existing urban landscape with color, light, supergraphics, and simple rainwater infrastructure – inexpensive projects that could be organized quickly and which would signal change.

Icons

Gateways

Industrial Facades

Incidental Infrastructure

Wayfinding

Events

Bold gestures can create instant memories that become indelibly associated with the District’s overall profile and sense of place.

Temporary artworks at key gateway locations along Manchester Street can announce the District and the signal the new development that is going to occur.

The industrial archaeology of historic distillery buildings can be highlighted as they are right now. Light and paint are two inexpensive media artists can use to explore these buildings.

Small scale urban elements and infrastructure, such as bollards and utility boxes, can be treated with artful interventions that give everything a new liveliness.

Special supergraphics can mark important places and help people find places within the District.

Event-oriented art projects can attract significant crowds who might not otherwise visit a place.

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Public Art/Public Realm Opportunities Key Opportunities for Signature Projects The public realm improvements proposed for the District offer some of the most significant opportunities for incorporating public art. In these places, public art can create both iconic images and places that engage people in a very direct way.

2 2

The two key elements of the public realm are Manchester Street itself and the Town Branch Trail, which provide connective tissue for vehicles and pedestrians throughout the District. There are also several specific public spaces proposed along the way: some are new insertions that are proposed by this study; some already exist and will be refurbished.

5 6 1

3

1

1

6

4

Artists could be engaged to be members of the design teams creating new spaces, such as Confluence Park or Gunpowder Plaza. Artists could also be commissioned to work on specific features, such as community gathering spots or new places where people can engage with Town Branch Creek. Artists could also be commissioned to create independent, yet site specific, pieces that are included in various parks and plazas.

1. Town Branch Trail

2. Melrose–Oak Park Rec Area

3. Confluence Park

4. Pyramid Park

5. Gunpowder Plaza

6. Manchester Street

The trail is a public space and an infrastructure project that leads people along the stream and through open spaces. Projects can reflect on both the trail itself as well as the views the trail gives of previously hidden landscapes.

A place for neighborhood recreation with a story circle gathering place and an artistic treatment of baseball field backstops are also shown below.

Here is where nature meets urban, where conditions–low and high water, seasons–are ever changing. Art can be dynamic and explore the interface of infrastructure and natural systems. It can also introduce the more invisible aspects of the site.

A place for neighborhood gathering and art possibilities include art-based fencing along Manchester Street, to define the space and make it feel safe, and a rain garden running through the park as part of the project to daylight the tributary.

A place for gathering and people watching, where events like concerts can be programmed or spill out from the adjacent buildings. Art should help anchor this space, yet reflect the serendipity of urban life, and perhaps work with stormwater.

This street will be the most visible, and most heavily used, public space in the District. The streetscape can be enlivened with artistic flair, using strategies like color to transform generic streetscape elements.

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Public Art/Infrastructure Opportunities Embedded Art in Infrastructure Artists can also produce work that is integrated with the various infrastructure and utility systems that weave through the District– water, stormwater, transportation, power, and waste. In the near-term, artists can produce work that highlights existing infrastructure with small-scale projects. Over time, art planners and artists should be involved with design teams working on infrastructure improvements, to identify opportunities for artist contributions early on, and to coordinate the artist’s work with the work of the rest of the design team.

Utilities

Underpass

Garage

Bridge

Stream

Recycling Center

Working utility systems, such as electrical equipment, street lighting, and water and sewer pumps and pipes, can be enhanced with artworks, or be artworks themselves.

The bridge that carries railroad tracks over Manchester Street marks the passage between the East and West Districts. The underpass can be a major artistic event.

A parking garage may be included in the development plans. Public art can be incorporated into the facade of the structure, enhancing its appearance.

The bridge that will cross Town Branch Creek to connect a new residential area to Manchester Street can be enhanced with art.

Improvements to the course of Town Branch Creek could include stream bank enhancements, aeration structures, and viewing areas.

The recycling center next to the District could be celebrated with art that explores the waste cycle; perhaps whimsical, perhaps made out of reclaimed materials.

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Recommendations and Implementation Strategies Recommended Plan Based on the evaluation criteria outlined in the Alternatives Analysis section of this report and further detailed in the following, Alternative No. 3 - Manchester Street and Pepper Trail is the recommended plan for implementation. With this alternative, improvements to Manchester Street are complimented with a multiuse trail inside the southerly right-of-way in the East District, while following adjacent to the Town Branch Creek in its relatively natural environment in the West District. Project Highlights • Manchester Street reverse curve allows roadway and trail to fit within clear width opening of existing railroad overpass at the confluence. • Defined access points and access management strategy improve corridor character and mobility for future development. • Street typical section promotes traffic calming to improve safety and support multimodal objectives. • Relocated commercial entrance improves sight distance and safety at the confluence. • Trail experience is enhanced by natural stream segment. • Trail alignment provides connectivity and direct access from Melrose-Oak Park and Irishtown neighborhoods. • Roadway and trail alignments minimize impact to both RJ Corman and Norfolk Southern railroads. • Location of trail promotes visibility along the East District to support retail/commercial market needs. • Opportunity areas are indentified for amenity elements throughout the corridor. • Existing localized storm drainage issues are addressed. • Cost of project goals and objectives is 50% lower than Alternative No. 1.

property included some environmental consideration for the historic designation of this property and its past uses. Alternative No. 1 - Town Branch Creek Trail provided the most desirable trail alignment in terms of relationship to Town Branch Creek; however at $24,000,000, its estimated cost was 50% more than Alternative No. 3, the Recommended Plan. The primary cost variation between the three alternatives involved location and placement of the trail in the East District area. For Alternative No. 1, the trail was located along the channelized section of Town Branch Creek in place of the existing RJ Corman Railroad siding. This alignment adversely impacts existing railroad operations and requires the following additional improvements: • Relocation of a segment of the RJ Corman Versailles rail line from the rail yard to Henkel-Denmark. • Track and switching Improvements within the existing rail yard to accommodate loss of the siding. • A new railroad bridge crossing Town Branch Creek. • A tunnel for the trail under the Norfolk Southern railroad. • Acquisition of a large commercial property and demolition of its existing structures. • A small segment of Town Branch stream relocation. • Necessary environmental investigations.

Criterion No. 1 - Implementable

Alternative No. 3 - Manchester Street and Pepper Trail scored favorably in terms of cost and also incorporated a more favorable trail alignment along Town Branch Creek in the West District area. The alignment of the trail on the Pepper Distillery

Criterion No. 3 - Catalytic Impact

Providing an experience that will help improve the quality of place for the existing neighborhoods and corridor while attracting visitors and private reinvestment is integral to the overall success of the district. Through public involvement and stakeholder feedback the quality of life/quality of place for the district is directly related to three key factors that include the extent of integration of the trail and stream, overall perception of safety, and sensitivity to neighborhood and cultural concerns. These factors were considered in relation to trail location and experience and overall effectiveness in maximizing accessibility with adjacent neighborhood areas.

The potential for catalytic impact was evaluated based on public support for the project, market need, and how well each alternative relates to other parallel initiatives. Alternative No. 1 and the recommended plan both offer higher potential for catalytic impact for the District. The noted public support for creek/trail interaction helps rate Alternative No. 1 very favorably for this factor. Conversely, activity along the street frontage, “where people help make places,” has been credited with improving the vitality of other successful districts and development initiatives. By placing the trail for the recommended plan within the streetscape of the East District, the window traffic increases for potential businesses which in turn helps meet the market need.

The resulting analysis ranged from a fully integrated stream/trail with Alternative No. 1 to a separated stream/trail with Alternative No. 2 to partial stream/trail integration with Alternative No. 3, the Recommended Plan. In considering all factors, it is apparent that the natural stream experience the public desires is most visible in the West District adjacent to Pepper Distillery. Alternative No. 1 and the recommended plan both include extensive interaction between the stream and trail from the confluence area to Thompson Road. Neither alternative carries a public trail beyond Thompson Road because of the close proximity of the distilling plant building and stream and the unsafe midblock roadway crossing location to the west at Manchester Street. The alignments for both of these options reflect a private loop around the distilling plant building that could add to the experience of trail users and benefit the redevelopment potential for that portion of the Pepper Distillery Project. The Town Branch stream segment in the East District has been channelized and includes unobstructed views of the RJ Corman rail yard. In addition to the implementation challenges mentioned earlier, concerns for safety with an additional pedestrian/rail crossing currently outweigh the benefits of the trail alignment along the channelized stream. Over time if the conditions in the district change, the recommended plan does not preclude adding a loop trail segment along this length of Town Branch Creek.

The following discussion describes how the Recommended Plan achieves the optimal balance for the goals and objectives of the project compared with the other considered alternatives.

Given the unique complexity of the Manchester Street Corridor, a more readily implementable alternative is essential in supporting redevelopment interest in the District. Three factors comprise this criterion including cost, land acquisition and potential for environmental impacts. The basic public infrastructure cost for the three alternatives considered ranged from $15,000,000 to $24,000,000 with Alternative No. 2 - Manchester Street Trail having the lowest opinion of probable cost. This alternative included a trail alignment that generally followed Manchester Street through the entirety of the corridor and scored highest for this criterion.

Criterion No. 2 - Quality of Life/Quality of Place

“Confluence Area” Norfolk Southern Railroad Overpass and at Grade RJ Corman Crossing.

Manchester Street - East District Recommended Plan.

The recommended plan provides improved trail connectivity to Irishtown as compared to the other alternatives, allowing more direct access to trail amenities and recreational experience.

In addition to these significant infrastructure costs, the following factors further affect the implementation feasibility of Alternative No. 1. • Railroad land acquisition from RJ Corman Railroad and agreement to relocate the existing rail facilities. • Commercial property land acquisition and required demolition. • Construction of a tunnel under a major mainline railroad facility. • Additional permitting requirement for stream relocation and railroad bridge crossing Town Branch Creek. • Potential environmental concerns along the future railway trail route. The Recommended Plan achieves the best balance of user experience, cost, and potential impediments to implementation. Revitalized Town Branch will Bolster Distillery District Initiative.

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Recommended Plan - West District Manchester Street and Pepper Trail 1 Defined access points and access management

strategy improves corridor character and mobility.

Melrose-Oak Park

2 Street typical section promotes traffic calming to

improve safety and support multimodal objectives. 3 Trail enhanced by interaction with natural stream

segment. 4 New street eliminates unsafe commercial driveway at

confluence and supports redevelopment potential. 5 Trail alignment provides connectivity and direct access

Thompson Road Park

from Melrose-Oak Park and Irishtown neighborhoods. 6 Roadway alignment minimizes impact to both RJ

Corman and Norfolk Southern railroads. LFUCG Recycling Center

James McConnell House Forbes Land, LLC

access management improvements. 6

A

5 Forbes Land, LLC

7 Significant property acquisition required for trail and

7

8 Further environmental investigation required based on

preliminary findings. CSX

2

1

1

1

Town Branch Creek

James E. Pepper Distillery 8

4

6 8

3

Legend - Manchester Street-Pepper Trail

Vulcan Materials Company

Sp

Roadway Improvements Streetscape Public Pedestrian and Bicycle Trail Improvements Private Pedestrian and Bicycle Trail Improvements Town Branch Creek

0’

Section AA (Existing)

56

62.5’

125’

250’ north

Section AA (Recommended Plan)

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


Recommended Plan - East District Manchester Street and Pepper Trail 1 Manchester Street reverse curve allows roadway and

trail to fit within clear width opening of existing railroad overpass at the confluence. 2 Defined access points and access management

AST

RJ Corman Rail Yard

strategy improves corridor character and mobility. 3 Street typical section promotes traffic calming to

improve safety and support multimodal objectives. 4 Trail alignment provides connectivity and direct access

from Melrose-Oak Park and Irishtown neighborhoods. 5 Optional future private loop if property access

becomes available. 6 Location of trail promotes visibility along the East

Town Branch Creek

District to support market needs.

5

7 Relocated commercial entrance improves safety at

W.M. Tarr Distillery

BYE Properties, LLC

2

2

2

confluence. 8 New street eliminates unsafe commercial driveway at

confluence and supports redevelopment potential.

2

Manchester St. 3

1

Pyramid Park

7

6

1

1

6 West End Mission B

4 4

Irishtown

8

Legend - Manchester Street-Pepper Trail Roadway Improvements Streetscape

Speigle Heights

Public Pedestrian and Bicycle Trail Improvements Private Pedestrian and Bicycle Trail Improvements Town Branch Creek Private Sidewalk for Outside Cafes (optional) 0’

Section BB (Existing)

62.5’

125’

250’ north

Section BB (Recommended Plan)

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

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Considerations for Implementation The Feasibility Study evaluation has outlined a variety of infrastructure-related needs to support the intended Distillery District Program. Through this evaluation, important considerations were also identified that add complexity to the approach for implementation of major capital roadway and trail improvements. These include: • Nonconforming interim redevelopment activity. • Extreme floodplain encumbrance in the West District. • Required rehabilitation and upgrades for public utility services. • Limited availability of sewer service in West District. • Pending consent decree trunk sewer remedial measures. • Need for unified approach to stream revitalization. • Corridor character negatively impacted by the truck traffic. • Lack of functional civic space. • Advanced deterioration of historic Pepper Distillery Buildings. • Outreach with neighborhoods and need for stabilization efforts. • Requirements for easements and property acquisition. The list of items noted above are not intended to be all inclusive, but instead the list is representative of the unique challenges that the District faces. Experience suggests that many of these issues extend well beyond the normal purview of the private sector. Feedback through various meetings and conversations with neighborhood representatives, concerned citizens and private sector development interests affirmed this assessment. As such, leadership in addressing these challenges should be carefully considered by LFUCG in formulating its strategy to support the TIF District initiative.

Priority Early Action Items To assist LFUCG in formulating a strategy to support the pending implementation phase for investment in public infrastructure, the consultant team identified short-term priorities where LFUCG could most effectively assist the District program. The table on this page highlights five key target areas that will be essential in catalyzing private sector investment in the district. A more detailed discussion of the purpose and need for each identified priority follows: 1. Street/Trail Preliminary Plan (Estimated Budget $200,000) Development of preliminary plans for the street and trail system is deemed a critical priority to establish the required structure for the future public realm for roadway, streetscape, and trail sections. The 30% level drawings will be used for a variety of purposes including the following: • Identification of planned drainage and sewerage facilities.

58

• Location of firm placement opportunities for utility system rehabilitation and upgrade planning. • Delineation of access management requirements to support trail system and multimodal objectives. • Establishment of required infrastructure framework for interim redevelopment and adaptive reuse activity. • Assistance in identifying potential Phase I implementation opportunities. • Bringing confidence to private sector in establishing firm outline for infrastructure improvements. Collectively, these and other resulting benefits will serve to assist in aligning the Distillery District Developer(s) initiatives with Phase I improvements and long-term objectives for public infrastructure throughout the corridor. 2. FEMA Floodplain Update (Estimated Budget $400,000)

Much of the District redevelopment area is encumbered by floodplain of significant magnitude. This condition is predominantly located in the West District area where nearly all property within the TIF development boundary is floodplain-challenged. Historical accounts and recent major flood events of record suggest floodplain boundaries and order of magnitude may be considerably overstated. As a result, it is recommended that a phased evaluation be conducted to reassess floodplain boundaries and base flood elevations throughout the corridor. The study should include a current evaluation of watershed hydrology using modern analytical methods and tools. If significant reductions in calibrated stream flows are validated, subsequent steps leading to an approved FEMA Letter of Map Revision could significantly enhance redevelopment opportunities throughout the corridor. To be credibly considered by FEMA, the study scale must extend far beyond the District boundary. Additionally, the required analysis and study scale far exceeds that which the private sector routinely undertakes. Upon completion, the results will potentially benefit other property owners both upstream and downstream of the District with greater confidence levels in floodplain mapping and flood elevations. 3. Utility Service (Estimated Budget $25,000)

A vitally important consideration for the District is provision of adequate and reliable utility service that meets future demands. Discussions with the nine utility companies that own and operate facilities along the corridor suggest significant needs exist for rehabilitation and upgrade of existing utilities to meet long-term demands for the District. Additionally, desires to improve corridor aesthetics by burying part or all existing overhead utilities requires careful planning and consideration both in terms of cost and suitable location(s) for duct bank systems.

To productively advance this conversation, it is recommended that LFUCG lead a utility company partnering initiative for the District that kicks off with a utility company summit to discuss public/private commitment level and interest in improving the corridor. The magnitudes of required improvements to public utility infrastructure could take several years to achieve as upgrade plans are developed and refined in conjunction with planned roadway and trail improvements. For a program of this magnitude, it is important for utility companies to see leadership and commitment in order to launch their internal process to plan and budget for such a costly endeavor. The goal for this initiative is to affirm utility company commitments to required service improvements in support of the project.

parallels the westerly right-of-way of Norfolk Southern Railroad where it crosses under the confluence and is embedded in the structure and inaccessible for maintenance. While the study may not integrate additional area or incorporate modifications to these other facilities, it provides a pivotal opportunity for LFUCG to holistically assess these infrastructure issues moving forward before a window of opportunity is closed. 5. Stream Revitalization (Estimated Budget $175,000)

As a central feature throughout the District, revitalization of Town Branch Creek is considered an important community objective that is tied directly to the Town Branch Commons initiative. With expressed potential for a new mixed-use district validated by the TIF, a healthy stream ecosystem must be a priority. To this end, it is important that a unified approach to revitalization be established that not only serves the needs of the District but also helps fulfill LFUCG’s regulatory commitment as an Municipal Separate Sstorm Sewer System (MS4). As a 303(d) listed stream, Town Branch Creek is targeted for close scrutiny by the regulatory community for action steps to reverse historic impairment trends.

4. Sanitary Sewer Service (Estimated Budget $25,000)

Availability and adequacy of sanitary sewer service are early checklist items for developers and financial interests seeking real estate investment opportunities. Given the uncertainty with this important development consideration for the West District Area, it is vital that an implementation plan for sewer service in this area be scripted so that private sector interests understand requirements and potential costs for this essential service. Historically, LFUCG has led previous efforts to define the orderly expansion of its public sewer system realm and plan for challenging unsewered properties within the developed Urban Service Area.

An important first step to stream revitalization is completion of a watershed-based plan. LFUCG has completed or is in progress of completing two similar planning efforts that are intended to evaluate other watersheds and impairment trends and outline comprehensive strategies for improvements. A benefit of such a plan is eligibility for matching grant funds that can be used for comprehensive stream restoration initiatives. As an MS4, LFUCG’s leadership of this important effort will ensure a unified approach to stream restoration that is consistent with its permit obligation to improve water quality.

Other factors contribute to the recommendation to undertake the study effort. As an example, unsewered areas are known to exist to the west of the District limits beyond Forbes Road. A very shallow inaccessible gravity sewer line crosses the easterly portion of the Pepper Distillery property. Additionally, a gravity sewer from the Versailles Road area Infrastructure Element

Milestone 1

Milestone 2

Establish MOA Initiate 30% Design for with Developer(s) Street/Trail Preliminary Plan Preferred Street/Trail for Targeted Public Alternative Investment

Perform Updated Floodplain Analysis of Stream

FEMA Floodplain Update

Complete Town Branch Watershed Hydrologic Study

Utility Service

Facilitate Needs Initiate Utility Company Assessment and Summit and Establish Define Upgrade Partnering Relationship Requirements

Sanitary Sewer Service

Authorize Study of Sewerability Alternatives

Stream Revitalization

Pursue Funding Authorize Watershed Opportunities for Based Plan to Support Targeted Stream Revitalization Initiative Improvements

Milestone 3

Objective

Request Construction Funding and Pursue Early Action Items to Improve Corridor Character

Align Developer(s) Initiatives with Phase I Improvements Program

Floodplain Map Revision/Increase Request FEMA Review Redevelopment and Concurrence Potential in West District Formalize MOAs for Service Upgrades/ Improvements

Utility Companies Commitment to Service Improvements

Integrate Adopt Implementation Recommendations with Implementation Plan Cost Sharing Plan with for Sewer Service Remedial Measures Developer(s) Program

Projected Duration

6-9 mo.

$200,000

18-24 mo.

$400,000

9-12 mo.

$25,000

6-9 mo.

$25,000

Outline Program of Commission Design for Improvements to Town 18-24 mo. Stream Restoration Branch

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

Estimated Budget

$175,000


Funding The scope of public infrastructure improvements required to support the District is substantial, both in terms of cost and complexity. As a result, implementation will likely require multiple phases relying of various sources of funding. Possible funding sources include the following: • Remaining Distillery District Bond Funds - Approximately $1.7 million remains in the original bond allocation that can be applied to portions of the project. • Tax Increment Financing (TIF) - TIF is a financing and development tool that permits local governments to capture future increases in property and other tax revenues generated by a new development within a specified development area. The captured value of the increase in tax revenues is used to attract private development or to finance public improvements for economic development projects. The District has already received TIF designation. After $20 million is invested between the developer(s) and LFUCG, all previously approved public infrastructure costs may be reimbursed from incremental tax proceeds. • Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP) - TAP is funded by the FHWA to support a variety of alternative transportation projects. Eligible projects include planning, design, and construction of on-road and off-road trail facilities and stormwater management controls. The grant can be used to pay for up to 80% of the total cost for each project with a 20% non-federal match. • Federal and State Highway Funding - The Lexington Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) and the KYTC manage various funding programs that are available for highway and bridge improvements. As a state highway route, Manchester Street is eligible for these funding sources through the State Transportation Improvement Plan.

• Clean Water Act Section 319(h) - 319 grants are available for watershed-based plan development and implementation, protection of Special Use Waters with identified threats, as well as other nonpoint source pollution control projects to help mitigate or prevent runoff pollution. Priority consideration is given to applications for watershed-based plan development and implementation in 303(d) listed streams. The grant can be used to pay for up to 60% of the total cost for each project with a 40% nonfederal match. • Recreational Trails Program (RTP) - RTP is funded by the FHWA. The program can be used to provide assistance for acquisition of easements, development and/or maintenance of recreational trails and trailhead facilities to benefit communities and enhance quality of life. The maximum grant request is $100,000. • Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP) - NSP was established to stabilize communities that have suffered from foreclosure and abandonment. The program provides targeted assistance to state and local governments to acquire and redevelop foreclosed and abandoned homes and residential properties that might otherwise become sources of blight within their communities. • Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) - LFUCG’s annual award of federal funds under the CDBG program is currently nearly $2,000,000. Section 108 is the loan guarantee provision of the program that provides communities with a source of financing for economic development, housing rehabilitation, public facilities, and large-scale physical development projects. It allows grant recipients to convert a small portion of their CDBG funds into federally guaranteed loans large enough to pursue physical and economic revitalization projects. This public reinvestment provides confidence in the development potential for the private sector. • USEPA Brownfield Cleanup Grant - The program is designed to help public and private sector stakeholders work together to sustainably reuse brownfields. Eligible projects include environmental assessments and cleanup.

Recreational Trails Program Neighborhood Stabilization Program Community Development Block Grant EPA Brownfield Cleanup Grant 1

 

  

Utility Relocation

  

Embedded Public Art

FEMA Floodplain Update

Environmental Cleanup

Stream Revitalization

 

Watershed-Based Plan

 

Environmental Assessments

   

Neighborhood Improvements

   

Trail

Bridge

N N N N N N Y1 Y1 N

Roadway

Additional Studies Required for Funding Consideration

Funding Sources

The Distillery District initiative presents a unique opportunity to energize a long overlooked area of downtown Lexington and transform it into a vibrant contributing mixed-use economic center. Collateral benefits of the potential re-emergence include new infrastructure and quality of life improvements that will benefit adjacent neighborhood areas including Irishtown and Melrose-Oak Park. There is also important historical relevance to this area related to the City’s early industrial beginnings that thrived along the banks of the Town Branch Creek, which still exists today as an important community asset. In short, there is sound rationale to help promote improvement of this area through infrastructure investment. These possibilities aside, LFUCG’s role in supporting this effort can be best served initially by bringing solutions to challenging questions that deter private sector investment and entrepreneurship in potentially costly and uncertain redevelopment initiatives. The Priority Early Action Items previously identified represent needs that go beyond the normal scope of the private sector. This is due in large part to their relevance with the broader community as a whole or complexity resulting from their interrelationship with the public realm. As more certainty is secured in these key areas of concern subsequent steps can be more confidently planned and implemented moving forward.

• Stream Revitalization (Watershed-Based Plan) – Outlines potential strategies to reduce flooding and improve riparian corridor. – Informs public improvement opportunities for Town Branch stream corridor. – Provides basis for opening lower reach of culvert system for University of Kentucky tributary. Recognizing investment in implementation is an important objective for the District, completion of these Priority Early Action Items represents a vitally important first step. The collective product of this initial investment will bring short-term confidence to the private sector, while serving as a checkpoint for LFUCG to assess how best to move forward with subsequent involvement. While certain priority items may take up to 24 months to fully complete, preliminary feedback should be evident in all priority areas within 9 to 12 months to help guide investment of remaining initial project funding. In looking beyond this milestone, the public infrastructure and development support strategies on the following pages highlight additional steps to consider in bolstering the Distillery District TIF initiative.

Although the recommended Priority Early Action Items have been listed individually for ease of understanding on the previous page, they are collectively intertwined and should be considered together as one moving forward. To illustrate their interrelationships and importance, consider the following: • Street/Trail Preliminary Plan – Supports identification of Phase 1 implementation opportunities. – Aids utility companies in planning for future facilities. – Guides planning for interim redevelopment initiatives. • FEMA Floodplain Update

Project Development Activities

Distillery District Bond Funds Tax Increment Financing Transportation Alternatives Program Federal and State Highway Funding Clean Water Act Section 319(h)

Phasing and Implementation Strategy

 

– Supports analysis of stream restoration alternatives. – Informs placement decisions for West District sewer infrastructure. – Determines adequacy of existing and proposed bridge openings. • Utility Service (Partnering Initiative) – Outlines coordination requirements with timing and construction of public improvements. – Elevates understanding of cost and accountability for relocations and upgrades. – Supports seamless final design for roadway corridor. • Sanitary Sewer Service (Implementation Plan) – Melds Consent Decree Remedial Measures plan with corridor improvements. – Unifies West District Sewer Solution with street/trail improvements plan. – Resolves conflicts with stream revitalization planning.

- Study required to determine eligibility for grant.

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S1 Prepare street and trail 30% preliminary design.

LFUCG

Public Infrastructure Strategy

Private Sector Developers & Investors

Public Infrastructure Support Matrix

PF/PA

S2

Complete FEMA Floodplain Update Study to establish reliable floodplain limits.

SA

PF/PA SL

S3

Convene utility company summit with partnering efforts to outline program, budget, and schedule for various service upgrades required to support Distillery District revitalization.

SA

SF/PA

SF

PF/PA SL

SA

PF/PA

SA/SF

PA/SL

S4 Develop a comprehensive solution for provision of sewer service to West District S5

Prepare watershed-based plan to provide avenue for future 319 grant funding in support of Town Branch stream rehabilitation initiative.

S6 Work with developer(s) to outline Memorandum of Agreement for phased public improvements Work with MPO to procure state and federal funding to support construction of future trail and roadway improvements. Implement early stage corridor traffic calming measures to discourage heavy truck through travel S8 patterns and begin enhancement phase for corridor character.

PA/SL SF

M1 Complete final design for Phase I public infrastructure improvements.

PF/PA

S7

M2 Acquire easements and begin implementation of Phase I utility upgrades.

PF/PA SL

SF/SA

Upgrade existing substandard public sanitary sewer infrastructure to serve near term redevelopment opportunities. Assess feasibility of daylighting lower reach of University of Kentucky box culvert system in Pyramid M4 Park to help restore stream ecosystem and enhance public gathering space.

M3

M5 Prepare unified design plan for Town Branch Creek revitalization initiative. M6

Acquire easements, private properties and/or right-of-way to support implementation of trail improvements.

PA/SL PF/PA PF/PA SL

SF/SA

PF/PA

PF/SA

SF/PA SL

M7 Initiate construction for Phase I public infrastructure improvements.

PF/PA

M8 Complete final design for Phase 2 public infrastructure improvements.

PF/PA

PA - Primary Administrative Responsibility PF - Primary Financial Interest SF - Supporting Financial Interest SA - Supporting Administrative Interest SA - Supporting Marketing & Promotional Interest SL - Supporting Legislative Responsibility

James E. Pepper Distillery

S1 - Short-Term Strategy No.1 M1 - Medium-Term Strategy No.1

James McConnell House

60

Town Branch Creek

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY


planning goals and objectives.

S2

Work with LexArts and local stakeholders to establish public art projects that build momentum and celebrate the historic and cultural legacy of the area.

Promote reinvestment in existing housing stock and incentivize development of mixed-income housing alternatives throughout the adjoining neighborhoods Work with local stakeholders to gain site control of targeted properties and S4 ensure that future development aligns with accepted community vision for redevelopment.

S3

S5

SF/SA PF/PA SF/SA

SA

PF

SA/SL

PA/SF SL

PF

PA

SF/SA

SL

SF/SL PF/PA

Promote private reinvestment into neighborhood housing stock as a means to increase economic diversity within the primary trade area population.

Other Public Agencies (Housing Authority)

Local Schools (FCS)

PA/SF/ SA

SL

Churches & Civic Institutions

Establish a Not-for-Profit Community Development Corporation (CDC) or Private

S1 Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) to spearhead implementation of strategic

Community-Building Orgs

CDC / LLC

LFUCG

LEX Arts

Neighborhood Groups

Development Strategy

Private Sector Developers & Investors

Development Support Matrix

SF

SF

SF/SA

SA

SA/SF

SF/SA

SF

Complete environmental assessments to determine physical, regulatory, and

S6 financial constraints on future development of targeted properties and pursue

PF/PA

SF/SA

SA

SF/SA

PA

SF/SA

SF

PA

SF

SA/SL

PA

PF/PA

SF/SA

SA

PF/PA

SA

brownfield grant funds to support cleanup

S7

Engage historic preservation interests to help support efforts to preserve historic corridor elements. Work with the LFUCG, private developers, and other partners to determine

M1 appropriate level of "gap" financing to support development of new market rate housing and commercial development on key district parcels.

M2

Partner with developers and property owners to recruit "first-in" tenants, retailers, and service providers to the district.

M3

Develop initial marketing and promotional materials to support tenanting and recruitment activities.

M4

Implement wayfinding enhancements that reinforce the unique history and culture and create a more identifiable civic/business district.

SA

M5 Assemble property as required to gain control of key district sites.

PF/PA

SA/SL

L1 Implement an on-going district tenant recruitment and retention program

SF/SA

SF

SA

PF/PA SF/SA

Expand geographic boundaries of community improvement efforts to address

L2 substandard housing and promote investment in mixed-income, owner-occupied

SL

SA

SF/SA

SA

PA

SA

SA

PA

SA

SA

housing. Work with Arena District stakeholders to develop a cooperative approach to

L3 community development and improve local competitive market position of

SA

associated business districts.

L4

Continue to assess priorities and solicit development proposals for strategically important properties. PA - Primary Administrative Responsibility PF - Primary Financial Interest SF - Supporting Financial Interest SA - Supporting Administrative Interest SA - Supporting Marketing & Promotional Interest SL - Supporting Legislative Responsibility

S1 - Short-Term Strategy No.1 M1 - Medium-Term Strategy No.1 L1 - Long-Term Strategy No.1

Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study, Lexington, KY

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Lexington Distillery District Improvements Program Feasibility Study