The name of Cedarwood Drive in the Oakwood subdivision will not be changed after all, the city's addressing committee decided Friday.
Earlier this summer, the committee had proposed changing the street name because there is another Cedarwood Drive. Oakwood residents reacted angrily when told that their street name might be changed.
The two Cedarwood Drives are in adjoining subdivisions, separated by a 5-foot berm. Cedarwood Drive in the Oakwood neighborhood opened in 1964. Cedarwood Drive in Coldstream subdivision opened less than 10 years ago.
The addressing committee had earlier proposed one of two options to the Oakwood neighbors: Either remove the berm connecting the two sections of the street, or rename Cedarwood in the Oakwood subdivision because it has fewer houses than the portion in Coldstream.
However, Ann Bolling, an Oakwood resident for 41 years, told the addressing committee that the first option would not work because the Urban County Council voted in August 1999 to retain the berm.
That decision was at the request of Oakwood residents who thought that joining the two sections of the street would increase traffic through their neighborhood, Bolling said. Also, with one way in and one way out, the neighborhood is safer, they said.
David Lucas, director of enhanced 911, said on Friday that no one on the addressing committee had that historical background when they made their original proposal.
Tom Martin, a city planner who serves on the committee, said he generally supports streets that connect because it promotes public safety. However, in this case, he was conscious of history and thought that Oakwood should be able to retain the name Cedarwood in its subdivision.
Oakwood subdivision, a historically black neighborhood, was developed in 1964 off Georgetown Road in northern Fayette County. Coldstream is a predominately white area.
"We are very happy and appreciative," Oakwood resident Billie Ingram said after the meeting. "This is the way it should be. After all these years, to have a name change made, we didn't need all that."
About 30 Oakwood residents showed up to protest the proposed name change. One resident of Coldstream was in the audience.
Lucas has met with Coldstream neighbors. They also did not want to change their street's name, but "they expressed the opinion, 'We want to get along with our neighbors,'" Lucas said.
He will meet again with Coldstream homeowners to ask them to come up with a new name for their section of Cedarwood, which will have to be changed.
All street names have to be unique to make it easier for police and firefighters to reach victims in distress, Lucas said.
Lexingtonians can vote on a name for the Newtown Pike extension by going to the city's Web site.
Several weeks ago, the city asked residents to submit possible names for the new street, and more than 560 names were suggested.
The city's addressing committee Friday cut the list to five finalists:
Mary Todd Lincoln Boulevard
Oliver Lewis Way
Lewis, an African-American jockey and native of Lexington, won the first Kentucky Derby in 1875.
Voting will continue until 3 p.m. Friday.
To vote, go to Lexingtonky.gov and click on the "Newtown Extension — name it" icon.