South Limestone between Avenue of Champions and Maxwell Street was scheduled to reopen at 6 p.m. Tuesday, giving residents a chance to see the transformed street.
The new South Limestone allows cyclists to ride in new bike lanes and walkers to stroll down wide sidewalks. Utility lines are now underground. There are new street lights, trees and rain gardens.
Another section of South Limestone, between Maxwell and Vine Street, remains closed to cars, but businesses are open. In mid to late June, the entire stretch between Avenue of Champions and Vine Street will be closed for about two days for a final coat of asphalt.
Work on the street began last July 22. It is scheduled to be completed by July 1. The project has been ahead of schedule throughout, said Susan Straub, city spokeswoman.
The goal of the overhaul is to support the downtown and campus corridors by encouraging downtown residents to visit the University of Kentucky and Transylvania University campuses, and inviting students, faculty and staff to come downtown. A key is to make blocks between the two schools and downtown more friendly to pedestrians and bicyclists.
South Limestone is part of Phase 1 of the city's Streetscape Master Plan. Other parts of the plan are quickly moving ahead downtown. The Fifth Third Bank Pavilion opened in April in the redeveloped Cheapside Park.
Sidewalk reconstruction is under way on Main and Vine streets between South Broadway and South Limestone. The new streetscape will include wide, ADA-compliant sidewalks, rain gardens, street trees and bike lanes.
Later this month, work will begin replacing sidewalks on East Main Street from South Limestone to Elm Tree Lane.