Lexington officials held a ribbon cutting Friday to mark completion of a streetscape master plan that caused disruption to pedestrians, drivers and businesses for months but resulted in a new look for downtown.
The makeover installed ADA-compliant sidewalks, rain gardens, street trees and bike lanes. Cheapside Park was redesigned, and the Fifth Third Bank Pavilion opened in April in the park.
The plan included improvements to South Limestone between Avenue of Champions and Vine Street. That work, completed this summer, closed Limestone for almost a year.
The $31 million streetscape plan, paid for with local, state and federal money, was proposed by Mayor Jim Newberry in 2007. Urban County Council gave the go-ahead in 2008.
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The Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games, which begin Sept. 25, provided incentive for the streetscaping and repaving, but new sidewalks have long been needed downtown, Newberry said.
Six historic markers on Main Street will be cleaned and reset before the start of the Games. After the Games, sidewalks on Main Street between Martin Luther King and Elm Tree Lane will be replaced.