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jjb1983

[Lexington] Bluegrass Airport considering 23 acre development

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Herald-Leader Article

"The Blue Grass Airport Board is in preliminary discussions with developers who want to put a premium hotel, restaurant and other businesses on 23 acres of land along Man o' War Boulevard."

I'm not really sure how I feel about this. I'd need to see the architecture of the hotel first. I dread the thought of goobling up more open space, but I can justify a need for a hotel, as long as it's done right. Just seems incongruous with the decision over Quest Church.

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Herald-Leader Article

"The Blue Grass Airport Board is in preliminary discussions with developers who want to put a premium hotel, restaurant and other businesses on 23 acres of land along Man o' War Boulevard."

I'm not really sure how I feel about this. I'd need to see the architecture of the hotel first. I dread the thought of goobling up more open space, but I can justify a need for a hotel, as long as it's done right. Just seems incongruous with the decision over Quest Church.

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I'm gonna re-post this over here for those that don't get to see it on SSC's forum.

I just want to see the airport expand from its current size. One runway @ 8,000ft or so is considered, by many pilots, unsafe for commercial use. Especially since the airport serves over 1,000,000 passengers a year and is home to the cities GA (General Aviation) based aircraft, something has to be done. They have either got to lengthen the current runway configurments or move away from their current location and build brand new. After they do this, lure a low-cost carrier to town (Southwest could be an option or even Airtran). The prices are currently a bit high for an airport and a city Lexington's size and lets face it, only one flight a day is on a mainline jet. Everything else is on regional jets. At least when you bring in a LCC, you get mainline service which is always a plus. I believe they are adding gates to the terminal which is great, but I still want to see the runways lengthened and other airfield improvments happen first. Every now and then Lexington sees a flight on a 747 or a 747SP come in, it would be nice if they had enough room to spare if they had to go "long" on the landing.

Outside of that, I think an airport hotel is a fantastic idea and I hope it happens sooner rather than later!

Just think of this for a second.....

Southwest comes in and sets up shop in Lexington. They start off with flights in some sort of order like this:

Daily Flights:

Boeing 737's

Chicago-Midway: 3x daily

Baltimore: 2x daily

Orlando: 2x daily --or-- Dallas: 2x daily

Nashville: 2x daily

Just for starters. All the cities mentioned above are Focus Cities ("hubs") for Southwest and all can get you to every destination in their system for less then you currently pay.

Airtran flights would look something like this:

Boeing 717's

Atlanta-Hartsfield: 4x daily

Orlando: 2x daily

Baltimore: 3x daily

And again, those are major connection points for Airtran. They would get you places more cheaply than you can get to them now. Plus it would wake Delta up out there at the airport and make them increase services, or atleast drop their prices.

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Herald Leader Article

"Owners of a 33-acre parcel next to Blue Grass Airport have withdrawn -- for the time being -- their controversial proposal to build a hotel, restaurant and other commercial structures on the land."

The parcel, IIRC, is on Man o' War Boulevard, which would have been accessed by one of the stubs. Good news to hear!

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There are still several horse farms along or near Man o' War Boulevard. One of those horse farms, which is not far from the airport, objected to subdivisions that sprouted up near Dunbar High School, and again when Quest Church tried to force the city to rezone land that was agricultural. That is to the south.

To the north is Keeneland and vast, undeveloped tracts.

To the west are horse and cattle farms. Several of the horse farms are Saudi King's and Princes and are very much opposed to development near their farms. Hence why the runway extension project was shelved for the indefinate future (cited from a H-L article).

To the east are cattle and buffalo farms, and one major horse farm: Calumet. Recall that only a little over ten years ago, Calumet was in debt and was _nearly_ sold to developers for subdivisions. At the very last minute, it was rescued and is now a thriving agricultural center.

Allowing development on land adjacent to the airport would only induce growth along what farms are left north of Dunbar to US 60 (Versailles Road) along Man o' War Boulevard. It would essentially nullify the opposition to Quest Church's expansion. It would also shrink the amount of 'empty land' along Versailles Road east to New Circle Road, which is nearly all agricultural, and would open up the land between (esp. to the south of Versailles Road) to heavy development.

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But most of the development that would sprout up in the area north of Dunbar would be commercial or very light Industrial. All acting in support of the airport operations. I can see your points, and they are well taken. But the fact that there are numerous large subdivisons in that general area should make one wonder why the remainder of that sliver of land hasn't been developed. Personally, I hate developments like what has happened to Man-O-War Blvd. for the most part. But in that part of town, I don't know if more development is really that bad of a thing.

Honestly, what they need to do is start over and build a new airport on the eastside of town. That was talked about around 2000 and nothing was ever made of it. I remember doing a report on it at WVLK-AM on the news one day. THe airport as it is today is just closed in and unable to expand without legal battles out the tail-end. If LEX, the city and airport, want to grow like they say they do the airport has GOT to become a priority to the city and its citizens soon. I think right now they are just happy with the status-quo, and that's not good enough in today's world.

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