‘A game-changer.’ Lexington hires firm for new $10 million public park to open in 2024

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Lexington plans ‘historic’ spending on recreation. Where $24M is headed for parks

Lexington has selected Brandstetter Carroll to help it design the first large community park in decades.

Brandstetter Carroll, which has helped the city design other park projects, will soon start gathering community input for the design of Cardinal Run North, an undeveloped green space off of Parkers Mill Road across from Cardinal Run South park, which has several baseball and softball fields.

“Cardinal Run Park North is going to be a game-changer,”said Mayor Linda Gorton. “Large city parks serve the needs of our community in so many ways. We are excited to work with Brandstetter Carroll, based right here in Lexington, to develop a park with something for everyone.”

The Lexington-Fayette Urban County Council is expected to take its first vote on the $700,000 contract with the Lexington-based firm Tuesday. A final vote will come in coming weeks.

The city has budgeted $10 million from $121 million in American Rescue Plan Act funding to design and the build the new park. In total, the city is spending $24 million in federal coronavirus relief funding on parks and park improvements.

The city acquired the land in 1997. It built Cardinal Run South, which is across from the proposed park, in the early 2000s. Cardinal Run North has long been on the city’s to-do list. Lack of funding kept the would-be park from happening.

Preliminary plans call for several sports fields, a dog park, playground equipment and trails — the public’s most requested amenities in parks.

“Cardinal Run Park North will fulfill the need for a new community park in Lexington and facilities that were identified by the public in the Parks & Recreation master plan,” said Benjamin E. Brandstetter, president of Brandstetter Carroll.

The city hopes construction on Cardinal Run North will start sometime in 2023 and be completed in 2024.

“This dynamic space will highlight several natural features as part of a nature-focused outdoor programming space in keeping with the scenic qualities of the Versailles Road corridor,” said Monica Conrad, the director of Lexington Parks and Recreation.

Cardinal Run North and Cardinal Run South total 192 acres, making it one of the top five parks in size in Fayette County.

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