Lexington Parks and Recreation maintains nearly 4,500 acres of green space for the community.
The Corridors Commission allocates taxpayer funds for the beautification and maintenance of landscaping along major arterial roads, which includes the planting and care of trees, shrubs and flowers. In collaboration with the Keep Lexington Beautiful Commission and corporate sponsors, beautification projects totaling over $350,000 were completed in 2017-2018. New projects include the Richmond Road corridor and the Winchester Road/New Circle interchange, these projects have been imitated and contractors selected to landscape these corridors with trees, perennials, and annuals.
Lexington Entry Corridors – Redevelopment of Lexington’s entryways—Versailles Road, Newtown Pike, Georgetown Road, Leestown Road and Harrodsburg Road—is continuing with permanent landscaping improvements begun in 2015 according to the Master Plan of the LFUCG Division of Environmental Services with community organization and business support. The 2017 Corridors Enhancement Match Grant (locations adjacent to a corridor and having a viable association) has received 8 applications for improvements.
Gratz Park—This historic area has integrated hardscape elements, lighting, a fountain and shaded paths that give welcome solitude to the busy downtown area. Mayfest, held Mother’s Day weekend, brings the public to celebrate and enjoy the park’s beauty. The fountain, a gift to the children of Lexington from local author James Lane Allen expresses playfulness.
Main & Vine Streets—Throughout the central portion of downtown are 151 bright hanging baskets, 295 pots filled with perennials, edibles, and annuals as well as decorative tree wells. Rain gardens along Main and Vine Streets reduce stormwater runoff.
Woodland Park—Lush trees and large lawns in Lexington’s first park provide plenty of space near downtown to walk, picnic, swing, or swim in the large outdoor pool. Volunteers maintain a community garden and the area takes pride in this resource including ID stakes for nearly every tree in the park.
The Arboretum, State Botanical Garden of Kentucky—Since its inception 28 years ago, this Kentucky go-to resource has expanded to provide educational resources such as demonstration gardens, Kentucky Heritage Trail, wildflower prairie, reflecting Koi pool, and a wonderful children’s garden including a miniature railway and KY landscape designed and installed by Paul Busse.
McConnell Springs Park— Identified as the site of Lexington’s founding, this National Register Historic Site with native plantings and natural setting thrives with high volunteer input, providing phenomenal educational resources for the entire state.
Town Branch Commons – This proposed linear urban park currently in the final design stage will bring Town Branch Creek, now flowing in a buried culvert under Vine Street and Midland Avenue, selectively to street level in a series of pools, fountains, rain gardens, and pocket parks stretching from the Isaac Murphy Memorial Art Garden on E. Third St. to Cox Avenue on the west side of Rupp Arena. A 12 foot wide multi-use trail will link Town Branch Trail with the Legacy Trail all the way to the Kentucky Horse Park. Already in place, a sound sculpture allows passersby to hear the underground flow of Town Branch. Created by artist Bill Fontana, “Surface Reflections, 2011” delights the senses with melodic sounds transmitted by a microphone dropped to the underground stream between 5th/3rd tower and the adjacent parking garage.
Paris Pike—Selected by USA Today and other national magazines as one of the top 10 most beautiful drives in the country, Paris Pike was widened for safety but maintained, through citizen effort, its iconic dry stone walls to keep the flavor of Kentucky history. It is wholly contained within a 10,000 acre historic district eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places.
Keeneland Racecourse – Lexington’s premier attraction during the spring and fall racing meets maintains beautiful, classic landscaping and maintenance year-round.
Fasig Tipton—This Thoroughbred sales and boarding center lies in a country estate setting frequently used for photography shoots and celebratory events.
Lexington Cemetery—Established in 1849 and intentionally built as both a place of beauty and a public cemetery, the 170 acres of gently rolling hills, winding hedges, 200 species of trees, benches, and ponds create a space that lends itself to remembrance and reflection. Some trees predate its establishment.
Baptist Health Hospital – The entrance to Baptist Health Hospital and Medical Office on Nicholasville Road is a welcoming and vibrant display of natives, perennials and annuals. The hospital campus maintains 4 specialty gardens for patients, families and the public. The sensory garden was designed to renew the 4 senses: lilacs and other fragrant plants for smell, running water and wind chimes for hearing, shade to be easy on the eyes and “touchable” plants, in addition to benches and bricks memorializing staff, patients and veterans. Another is directly off the infusion center so that patients can savor the outdoors while receiving chemotherapy. Jon Carloftis designed a two-story garden surrounded by glass in the North tower with a rounded wall of rushing water with benches in the center to create almost a place of sensory deprivation for those who are stressed or overwhelmed.
Transylvania University —Almost hidden from view by sculpted brick walls, vines and hedges, new athletic spaces for a landlocked university situate themselves without looking out of place in a historic section of downtown.
Park Place Apartments on Tates Creek Road—The entrance and interior spaces of this multi-residential community are updated seasonally. The plantings and containers throughout the interior of the landscape provide a high-end hotel feel for residents and visitors alike.
Grand Reserve Apartments on Clearwater Way—Attention to detail and variety are evident in the landscape and maintenance of this multi-residence community.
Transylvania Park Medians—Created with grants and neighborhood volunteers, what was a worn street median transformed into a community park well-kept and used by all in the neighborhood.
Hartland Entrance and Medians—One of the first gated communities in Lexington, Hartland has continued as a model for well- designed and maintained neighborhoods.
Headley Green Entrance/Subdivision—A community with a high ratio of seniors, this neighborhood continually updates its entrance off Mason-Headley road, using sustainable and pollinator-friendly plant varieties. Community members as a whole take pride in maintaining their yards and homes to create a highly walkable and dog-friendly atmosphere.