Community Vitality

Parks, recreation, open space and trails

Utilizing input gathered from hundreds of Lexington community members, our Parks & Recreation Department recently completed the 2018 Parks and Recreation Master Plan to address our community’s changing needs and demographics. It will provide guidance for parks, recreation, open space, and trails in Lexington for the next ten years and beyond.

Lexington Parks and Recreation offers more than 100 parks and facilities including our newest addition, Buckhorn Park, as well as 7 pools,
7 plaza spaces, 5 golf courses, 6 dog parks, 4 community centers, 4 skate parks, 2 forested nature centers, 2 equestrian areas,
a farm and an archery range.

In addition to the facilities offered by Lexington Parks and Recreation, our public school system provides playgrounds, basketball courts, and other amenities at 36 locations that are open to the public when school is not in session. Many private facilities (home owners associations, neighborhood associations, churches, etc.) located in Lexington also offer playgrounds, tennis courts, trails, and swimming pools for residents.

Lexington boasts over 70 miles of trails and paths in more than 50 different parks and locations spread throughout the community. The Legacy Trail, one of the most popular, is a 12 mile shared-use greenway trail connecting downtown Lexington with area neighborhoods, parks and historic sites as it follows a northward course to the Kentucky Horse Park.

Dozens of athletic camps and leagues, aquatics programs, art classes, equestrian programs, and more are offered through the parks department as well as by community organizations throughout Lexington.

In addition to accessible facilities and parks, Lexington Parks and Recreation offers an extensive Therapeutic Recreation program for individuals with disabilities.

Biking and Walking

By 2045, our region’s population is estimated to grow by 42%. How will our transportation infrastructure be able to serve this growth when funding continues to be limited and competitive? The 2045 Metropolitan Transportation Plan (MTP) is a long range plan that outlines goals and strategies, guiding the expenditure of federal transportation funds in Fayette and Jessamine counties for the next 26 years.

Lexington’s Bicycle & Pedestrian Master Plan, adopted in 2018, guides decision-makers in improving bicycling and walking in our community. It focuses on increasing safety and mobility; developing a connected bikeway network in and around Lexington and the surrounding communities; and creating connected, walkable streets that allow people of all ages and abilities to safely and conveniently get where they want to go. The plan includes recommendations for bikeways, sidewalks and trails as well as policies, programs and infrastructure improvements.

Lexington has an active biking community with numerous groups and organizations focused on promoting biking for recreation, fitness and as an equitable and sustainable means of transportation. Groups such as the Bluegrass Cycling Club and Social Cycling offer group rides, workshops and partner with local businesses to host a variety of community events. If Mountain Biking is your thing, check out the Veterans Park Mountain Bike Trail or connect with the Kentucky Mountain Bike Association.

Lexingtonians take full advantage of our diverse landscape in the more than 100 running, walking and biking events hosted each year throughout the community. Some of the most notable include the Horse Capital Marathon whose course passes over 50 Central Kentucky horse farms; A Midsummer Night’s Run along the streets of Downtown Lexington, and the Urban Mountain Challenge, a 31 story stair climb of the iconic Big Blue Building.

Air quality and pollution

The Lexington Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) monitors local air quality and promotes ways to reduce air pollution.