Up to now, officials with the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games have said parking for the Games would be at Coldstream Research Park, with free shuttles to the Kentucky Horse Park. An exception would be some pricey parking for VIPs near the park's campground.
However, that plan seems to be changing rapidly— and WEG officials won't divulge the details.
Recently, Spy Coast Farm, a hunter jumper farm on Ironworks Pike, agreed to lease a 65-acre parcel next to the campground to the Kentucky Horse Park after being approached by park officials, farm manager David Mansfield said.
"They're going to use some of it for storage and some of it for parking," Mansfield said. The land is being lent and leased, Mansfield said, because Spy Coast Farm is a sport horse breeding and training facility whose owners want to help the Games.
"We're committed to what they're doing there and thought it was the right thing to do," Mansfield said.
WEG spokeswoman Amy Walker wouldn't comment on any of the changes: whether parking and shuttles will still be free, whether they will still use Coldstream, or whether the Spy Coast property is large enough for all the cars that will carry passengers to WEG.
In an e-mail, Walker said that the transportation plan is being "re-evaluated" and that it would be released to the community in the coming weeks.
Ironworks Pike is two lanes between Newtown Pike and the Horse Park campground, where it becomes four lanes leading to Interstate 75. In previous plans, Horse Park officials said all the World Games shuttles would drive to the park by way of Georgetown Road rather than Newtown Pike.
The Spy Coast property is on the two-lane part of Ironworks. Officials had said originally they were worried about too much traffic congestion on Ironworks, which was why the Coldstream plan was put forward.
Jim Downs, the transportation expert with Gameday Management, the company that was hired to plan transportation for the Games, did not return phone calls last week.
Now, the only concrete plans seem to be with LexTran, which will operate a direct bus route from downtown Lexington to the Kentucky Horse Park during the two weeks of the Games.
The $10 round-trip ride will allow residents and guests to park downtown and go directly to the park, said Lextran spokeswoman Jill Barnett. "This will allow the people of Lexington who want to experience the Games to get out there without any hassle," Barnett said.
LexTran doesn't have any regular routes to the Horse Park. This temporary route will begin on High Street between Upper and Mill Streets and leave hourly. The first bus will leave two hours before the first event at the Games, and the last will leave the park two hours after the last event.