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Take Me to the River: Lexington finds its way to the water with new Kentucky River park plans

Kentucky River
Kentucky River

Lexington is poised to purchase 30 acres along the Kentucky River for a new park, which will grant the county public access to the river.

When it comes to natural water attractions, Lexington isn’t a place that comes to mind. In fact, District 12 councilmember Kathy Plomin said it even holds a record in that regard.

"Lexington, Kentucky is the largest city in the United States furthest away from a body of water... Today we're going to make up for it as we celebrate (that) the city and county has bridged that distance gap. We are right at the water's edge."
District 12 Council Member Kathy Plomin

That’s thanks to a deal that will finally give Lexingtonians public access to 12 miles of the Kentucky River between locks. Under the agreement, the city would take over property off Old Richmond Road, near the I-75 bridge into Madison County.

It’s a project that was, like many, delayed due to the pandemic, and work remains to be done before the area is transformed into a riverside park, ready for canoers and kayakers.

The $1.6 million purchase also needs the approval of the Urban County Council. A projected opening date has yet to be set.

Josh James fell in love with college radio at Western Kentucky University's student station, New Rock 92 (now Revolution 91.7). After working as a DJ and program director, he knew he wanted to come home to Lexington and try his hand in public radio.