Fayette County

Affordable housing for veterans planned for VA Hospital campus on Leestown Road

Photo of the main building at the Veterans Administration Hospital on Leestown Road in Lexington , Ky., Monday, October 29, 2001.
Photo of the main building at the Veterans Administration Hospital on Leestown Road in Lexington , Ky., Monday, October 29, 2001. File photo

Two new affordable housing developments got the green light Thursday from a Fayette County planning body.

The Urban County Planning Commission voted unanimously Thursday to approve a zone change that would clear the way for 50 townhouses and apartments on 10 acres of the campus of the Veterans Administration Hospital on Leestown Road. The housing will be offered to military veterans first, but could be open to all low-income families.

The total square footage for the development, which will front Opportunity Way, is 59,000 square feet.

“They will reuse some buildings on the property that have not been used since the 1980s,” said Traci Wade, the city’s interim planning director.

AU Associates, the developer, has a long-term lease with the VA. Holly Wiedemann, president of AU Associates, said the development will have one, two and three-bedroom apartments. In addition to re-using existing buildings, the development will include some new construction.

“This is something the Veterans Administration is doing around the country,” Wiedemann said.

The zone change from agricultural urban to high-density residential must now be approved by the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Council. If that happens soon, Wiedemann said the development could be open sometime in 2019.

The planning commission also voted unanimously to approve a zone change for a 61-unit affordable housing development for seniors on Antique Drive, directly behind the Meadowthorpe Antique Mall on Leestown Road. AU Associates is also the developer for that two-story development.

Wiedemann said both projects will likely receive some funding from the city’s affordable housing fund. A timeline for the Antique Drive development has not been set, Wiedemann said. The zone change from a neighborhood business to a high-density apartment zone must now be approved by the Urban County Council.

No one spoke against either development during Thursday’s commission meeting.

Beth Musgrave: 859-231-3205, @HLCityhall

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