Lexington council action this week to facilitate construction of a new convention center included extensive discussion about plans to demolish the Jefferson Street viaduct bridge. Members of the Main Street Baptist Church appeared at several previous council meetings during the spring expressing concern about how the new facility would affect church parking.
Lexington Convention Center Board Chair Craig Turner told council Tuesday that church officials are satisfied with the parking arrangements planned once the bridge is taken down. Council Member Angela Evans says some hesitation remains. “At least some of the members I’ve spoken to, they’ve conceded might perhaps be a better position, but I don’t think satisfied might be a term they would use,” said Evans.
Mayor Jim Gray said it is the recommended step to help facilitate work on the new convention center site. “The bridge comes within a few feet of the new building and from a constructability point of few they included the demolition of the bridge because of that effect on the construction of the convention center,” said Gray.
Finance Commissioner Bill Omara told council the action this week dealt with financing the project and not the construction method. A future council vote would center on transferring the bridge property over to the Lexington Center for demolition.