Fayette County

Defunct private golf club to get new life: New townhouses approved for Andover.

Andover Golf and Country Club closed in February, and it’s scheduled to be sold at auction at Monday afternoon.
Andover Golf and Country Club closed in February, and it’s scheduled to be sold at auction at Monday afternoon. Photo provided

A small portion of a once-defunct private golf course on Todds Road will soon become a new town house development.

The Lexington-Fayette Urban County Council voted unanimously Monday to approve a series of zone changes for nearly 18 acres at 3450 and 3550 Todds Road after a more than two-hour hearing.

The plan includes adding 70 townhouses on land that was once a driving range. An additional 18 townhouses will be on land that is now a parking lot. A long-shuttered club house will likely become a restaurant, developers said Monday.

The Urban County Planning Commission voted unanimously in April to approve the zone changes for the new development. The city’s planning staff had also recommended approval of the zone changes.

The Urban County Council has final say on zone changes.

“It’s compatible with the surrounding uses,” said Richard Murphy, a lawyer for Anderson Communities during Monday night’s hearing. There are already townhouses adjacent to the proposed townhouses.

Murphy said they hope to have a public restaurant in what was once the clubhouse, which has been closed for more than two years.

“Private clubs are not successful,” Murphy said. “We want to put a restaurant or other community shops. We want to bring this back to life.”

The plan by Anderson Communities to build 88 townhouses was developed with the six neighborhood associations who purchased the former Andover Golf and Country Club last year after it went into bankruptcy. Anderson Communities has an option to purchase the approximately 18 acres from the consortium of neighborhood associations.

Homes on fairway of Andover
Homes near the 10th fairway at Andover Golf and Country Club in Lexington. Herald-Leader file photo

Nathan Billings, a lawyer who represents the six homeowner associations, said Anderson Communities spent months with the Andover neighborhood group hammering out the details of the proposed development. The remaining 145 acres of what was once the golf course will remain green space and is managed by those neighborhood associations.

Those six neighborhood associations represent more than 1,300 home owners, he said.

Still, some opposed the zone changes.

Clyde Honaker lives near the driving range where some of the proposed town homes are supposed to go.

Honaker told the council they were initially told there were only going to be 36 town homes on the driving range. Instead, the proposal in front of the council was for 70 town homes on the driving range.

Honaker said there are also serious storm water issues on that driving range.

“Can this area handle an additional 88 townhouses?” Honaker said.

Rick Towner said, he, too is concerned about stormwater run off on the driving range. Towner lives in an adjacent town home.

“All of this rain has to go some place,” Towner said. “I would be pleased with 36 townhouses.”

Towner asked the council to reduce the 70 townhouses to 36.

K.C. Crosbie, who lives in the Andover Estates neighborhood, said the neighborhood associations were originally told months ago the driving range would only have 36 units and the former club house would be a community center.

“If we had known that there were 88 units, we would have showed up at the planning commission,” Crosbie said. Crosbie, a former council member, also asked the council to decrease the number of units.

Several members of the Andover Estates neighborhood spoke in opposition to the zone change Monday.

Billings said there was never a promise that there was only going to be 36 units. Moreover, Anderson Estates was not one of the six neighborhood associations which agreed to purchased the former golf course.

Those six neighborhood associations put out a bid for proposals for developers. The sale of the 18 acres would help pay off loans the neighborhood associations took out to pay for the remaining 145 acres.

For the math to work and for the homeowners associations to generate the amount of money needed to pay off the loans needed to purchase the golf course, the number of units on the driving range had to be increased to 70 units or 88 overall, Billings said.

Murphy said the density of the proposed townhouses are similar to the density of the townhouses already on the golf course property.

Councilman James Brown said he thought the proposed development was a good fit. There are already townhouses in that area, he said.

Councilman Preston Worley agreed. Worley’s council district includes the former Andover golf course.

“This is similar design and similar lay outs,” Worley said of the proposed 88 town houses.

The restaurant has not yet been named. It’s not clear when construction on the townhomes will begin. Jimmy Nash Homes, which built other townhomes in the area, has been selected as the builder.