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Newtown Pike Extension Progressing

By Stu Johnson

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- – The arrival of summer means time is running out for road workers preparing for the World Equestrian Games. They've been at work on a key transportation project in downtown Lexington.

The extension of Newtown Pike through a portion of downtown has been talked about for years. Now, it is happening.

Thousands of fans are expected to trek from the Kentucky Horse Park into downtown Lexington via Newtown Pike. A new bridge over Town Branch Creek is coming along. Urban County government engineer Andrew Grunwald says an almost completed bridge deck is a good sign of progress.

"There's still is a considerable amount of work to be done but pouring the bridge deck is a major step."

It will be about three years before the Newtown Pike extension reaches South Broadway. But the local project manager says, if all goes well, the stretch from Main Street to Versailles Road should open before the games commence this fall.

Work also continues on a major redevelopment project in the Davis Bottoms community just a few blocks away. Close to 20 families there, displaced by the road work, now live in temporary trailers.

"Currently we have two more families to move into our temporary housing area then we should almost be all completed with temporarily moving families out of the way," says Grunwald.

It will likely be three to four years before those families can move into permanent housing.