Soccer Complex Proposed in the Agricultural-Rural Zone 6/28 Hearing

Dear Neighbors,

The Fayette County Neighborhood Council Board has decided to send you a message from the Fayette Alliance about an upcoming Board of Adjustment case that would remove land from agricultural use between Russell Cave Road and Newtown Pike and convert it to a commercial soccer facility with 12 fields and a parking lot for 750 automobiles. Little support exists for such a change in Lexington’s Comprehensive Plan or the recent On the Table event asking for public input on the direction of Lexington’s future. In addition, the proposal has some neighborhoods concerned about its effects on them.

After reading the letter from the Alliance, please write Lexington’s Planning Commission staff at to if you wish to express your opinion. Please also consider attending the Board of Adjustment meeting when the Board will vote the measure up or down. The meeting will occur on June 28 at 1:30 p.m. on the 3rd floor of the Phoenix Building at 200 East Vine Street.


Walt Gaffield, President
Fayette County Neighborhood Council, Inc. (FCNC)

From the Fayette Alliance:

Good afternoon,

A critical issue has come before the Board of Adjustment impacting agricultural land outside our Urban Service Boundary that requires immediate action and attention from our community members. If you are able, please use the link [above] to email Planning Staff to express your concern and opposition to this proposal as soon as possible.

There is additional information below for your review on this matter. Please also mark your calendars for a special meeting of the Board of Adjustment on this matter. Having as many people as possible attend this meeting is critical to our efforts.

BOA Special Meeting
6/28, 1:30pm
200 E. Vine Street, 3rd Floor (Phoenix Building)

The integrity of our Agricultural-Rural zone, made up of our most prime soils outside the Urban Service Boundary, is under threat. Our A-R zone is the foundation of our brand and identity as the horse capital of the world and the factory floor of our economy, directly supporting 1 out of every 12 jobs in Lexington-Fayette County and creating a $2.3B annual economic impact in our community. Outside the USB, the success of the agricultural operations that support these jobs, support local food, and work as a pillar of our diverse economy, depend on the protection of the zoning ordinance. When an intense commercial use is proposed to be located in our agricultural zone, completely unrelated to agriculture, adjacent to million-dollar agricultural operations, with the potential to set precedent for how we will evaluate uses in the A-R zone moving forward, we need our community members to make their voices heard in opposition.


Anderson Communities, on behalf of Lexington Sporting Club, has requested a conditional use permit for a 12-field soccer complex and 750-space parking lot on property located in the Agricultural-Rural (A-R) zone, located at 2501 Russell Cave Road. The soccer complex would be accessed via Newtown Pike and Providence Place Parkway. The project area consists of a 60-acre portion of a larger agricultural parcel between Russell Cave Road, Newtown Pike, and Interstates I-75 and I-64, right outside of the Urban Service Boundary. The soccer complex will host practices and games for Lexington Sporting Club youth and professional members and larger regional soccer tournaments and events.

Separately, located in another zone just to the south of the 12-field complex, a 6,000-10,000 person soccer stadium is being proposed, which will itself have thousands of parking spaces and be used for professional soccer games, concerts, and other large events. A stadium is not currently permitted as a use in the Economic Development zone, which is another issue before the Planning Commission and one you’ll hear more about in the near future. The soccer stadium is a related, but separate issue, from the 12-field soccer complex issue coming before the Board of Adjustment at this time.

Fayette Alliance Concerns

The proposed use of agricultural land for a 12-field soccer complex and 750-space parking lot, along with restroom and maintenance facilities to accommodate those visitors, is the most intense use of land on our prime soils, outside the USB, and unrelated in any way to agriculture, our community has faced in some time. Permitting a non-agricultural use of this commercial nature and of this intensity in our A-R zone, and specifically in this location, would set county-wide precedent that will impact the future of development in this area and throughout both our rural and urban zones in Fayette County.

The location of this proposed complex in our northern corridor poses significant threats to surrounding agricultural operations on Newtown Pike, Ironworks Pike, and Russell Cave Road as well as critical concerns around traffic, noise pollution, stormwater runoff, and sewer impacts for agricultural, residential, and commercial development alike. Adverse impacts on surrounding equine animal operations, in particular to this location, which are sensitive to noise, traffic, and light, would be significant.

The proposed use for this property would also fundamentally change the character of development in the A-R zone and particularly in this corridor. Permitting a use of this type would likely discourage additional agricultural operations from locating nearby due to the impacts created by the use, which works to undermine the intent of the A-R zone where this property is located.

Our community has been committed to growing sustainably and equitably since the adoption of our USB in 1958 – and part of that responsible growth is the balance between our urban and rural areas. Agricultural businesses, a pillar of our local economy, are limited in where they can be located. The A-R zone contains our most prime soils, and our zoning code prevents intense urban uses from conflicting with this zone for a reason.

While we hope soccer can be successful in Lexington, it should not be to the detriment of the A-R zone, the zoning ordinance, and the agricultural operations that are so critical to Lexington-Fayette County.

Next steps:

– Email Planning Staff in opposition to PLN-BOA-22-00026
– Attend the Board of Adjustment Special Meeting on 6/28 at 1:30, 200 E. Vine Street, 3rd Floor Conference room
– Stay tuned!

Fayette Alliance appreciates your commitment to our community. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We sincerely appreciate your timely action on this matter!

With gratitude,

Brittany M. Roethemeter, J.D.
Executive Director
Fayette Alliance