Mayor officially opens unique greenspace on Dantzler

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – Three residential lots that were once home to flood-prone houses are now an attractive neighborhood public greenspace, complete with a stream buffer and adventure garden, all thanks to the work of the Greenspace Commission.

Tuesday morning, Mayor Linda Gorton and Councilmembers Hannah LeGris and Chuck Ellinger joined neighborhood representatives and members of the Greenspace Commission to cut a ribbon to officially open the greenspace at 309 Dantzler Court.

“We are improving vacant greenspace areas to enhance our neighborhoods and to make greenspace more accessible,” Gorton said. “Congratulations to our Greenspace Commission.”

To establish connectivity, the City is especially interested in greenspaces that are within walking distance to parks and trails.

Councilmember Hannah LeGris, who represents the Dantzler Court area, said, “I’m grateful for the leadership of the Greenspace Commission, and the work of former Councilmembers Jake Gibbs and Mark Swanson in developing an active and beautiful natural area in the Dantzler Court Greenspace. It’s a great place to visit and engage with nature!”

Councilmember Chuck Ellinger, a member of the Greenspace Commission, said, “As a councilmember, Greenspace Commission member and a nearby neighbor, I look forward to enjoying the improved greenspace on Dantzler Court. The greenspace provides a repurposing of the flood-prone lots to create a space that we all can be proud of.”

The city’s Greenspace Commission chose the three lots on Dantzler Court as its pilot neighborhood greenspace project in February 2019. The city acquired the lots in 2007 and 2008 using flood mitigation funds from the Division of Water Quality. The houses that were on the properties were torn down between 2008 and 2010.

Enhancements to the site include a bench, new trees, an adventure garden featuring logs perfect for exploring, a stream buffer, wildflower border plants, and a geocaching station, an outdoor treasure hunting game using GPS-enabled devices. Educational signage and a bicycle rack will soon be added.

The improvements cost approximately $16,000. Funds came from the Urban County Council’s Neighborhood Development Funds, the Blue Grass Community Foundation, and the city’s Division of Environmental Services through the Water Quality Management Fee.

The Greenspace Commission is now working on improving the Eureka Springs detention area located off Eureka Springs Drive. It hopes to begin implementation of the project next spring.

The mission of the Greenspace Commission and Greenspace Trust is to preserve, enhance, and maintain greenspace throughout Lexington.

This citizen group assists the Division of Environmental Services in management of more than 500 acres of greenspace, many in residential areas. Many are lots that were purchased because of persistent flooding.

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