Lexington pro soccer yanks youth soccer fields proposal

Lexington Sporting Club announced Friday it would no longer pursue building 12 youth sports playing fields off of Newtown Pike but will continue to pursue a 10,000 seat soccer stadium.

In a statement released Friday, Lexington Sporting Club said after speaking with Mayor Linda Gorton, various rural land owners and other community members it has decided not to pursue the youth sports fields.

The group said it has notified Anderson Communities, which owns the land where the proposed sports fields would be located, that the group does not want to proceed.

“We believe this decision is best for our community and are grateful for the support they have pledged in helping with this effort,” the statement said.

The move comes after the Fayette Alliance, which represents rural land interests, and several nearby farm owners filed a lawsuit in Fayette Circuit Court challenging the Board of Adjustment’s June 28 decision to grant a conditional use permit for the youth sports fields in an agricultural zone.

Many in the rural area have said that the youth sports fields would create too much traffic and problems in an area that is largely agricultural. The fields are adjacent to Fasig-Tipton, a horse auction house.

In its statement, Lexington Sporting Club said it will continue to work with planning officials on a proposed stadium in the economic development zone off of Newtown Pike and Interstates 75 and 64.

A zone text amendment that would allow for the stadium in an economic development zone was scheduled to be heard Thursday at the Urban County Planning Commission. That text amendment will likely be postponed due to illness of a lawyer who represents Anderson Communities, which also owns the land where the proposed stadium is set to be located.

“We continue to work through the planning process with the proposed location of the our stadium in the Economic Development Zone adjacent to the interstate and will continue to work with community leaders and planning staff on alternative sites for our much-needed youth fields,” the statement read.

Beth Musgrave has covered government and politics for the Herald-Leader for more than a decade. A graduate of Northwestern University, she has worked as a reporter in Kentucky, Indiana, Mississippi, Illinois and Washington D.C.

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