Town Branch Commons

Town Branch Commons is a transformative public-private park and trail system that traces the historic Town Branch Creek through downtown Lexington. It was designed to be a strip of Bluegrass running through downtown. This winding park and trail system roughly follows the path of Town Branch, Lexington’s first water source, located in a culvert under modern-day Vine St.

The Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government has overseen the Town Branch Commons Corridor construction. The corridor system includes continuous bike and walking paths, a lush green band through downtown, connecting new and existing parks, and improved water quality. It links our city's two major trails, Town Branch Trail and the Legacy Trail, giving us 22 miles of uninterrupted trail, connecting downtown to our world-famous rural landscape.

Interested in learning more? Check out our History of Town Branch Commons page.

Awards and Recognitions

  • 2024  ACEC 2024 Engineering Excellence Award 
  • 2024  ACEC-KY 2024 Engineering Excellence Award
  • 2023 ASLA National Honor Award in Urban Design
  • 2023 ASLA Kentucky Honor Award in General Design Constructed Work
  • 2023 ASLA New York Merit Award in General Design
  • 2023 ASLA SERC Merit Award in Design Constructed
  • 2022 Federal Highway Administration Environmental Excellence Award

Found Along the Commons

Town Branch Commons Corridor is all-inclusive of the Gatton Park on the Town Branch, Town Branch Trail, immediately adjacent parks, pedestrian spaces and connections to other downtown parks, plazas, etc. This comprehensive system is made possible by a public-private partnership between the City of Lexington and the Town Branch Fund.

The downtown trail was officially opened during a celebratory event on Oct. 13, 2022. 

Along the Town Branch Commons corridor, you may experience:

  • Town Branch Water Walk an online education walking tour of the Commons. You can check this out while walking along the trail or from the comfort of your own home. Visit the trail signs website to read and watch videos to learn more about water quality and the history of Lexington.
  • Isaac Murphy Memorial Art Garden is the first park in the United States to honor the earliest African American professional athletes – the Thoroughbred jockey. The garden is located on land once owned by Murphy in the historic East End of Lexington. The park features art and a small outdoor classroom and is the trailhead for the Legacy Trail and the Town Branch Trail - the first stop on the Town Branch Commons!
  • Charles Young Park is a longstanding East End Neighborhood landmark and is listed on the national register of historic places. It was established in 1934 as the city’s first indoor public recreational facility for African-Americans, and the adjacent park was only the second outdoor public recreational facility for African-Americans in Lexington. The Park is named after Charles Young- who was a soldier, diplomat, and civil rights leader and his life's story is embedded into new renovations in the park. The park is home to a recently upgraded playground and Splash!, currently under construction. Splash! is a nature-inspired splash pad that will be universally designed, safe for a wide variety of age groups, and offer amenities for comfort for caregivers and those stopping in off the trail. Learn more about Charles Young Park.
  • Northeastern Park is a .65 acre neighborhood park featuring playground equipment and green space. This park has improvements underway, stay tuned for more information!
  • Thoroughbred Park is a 2.5 acre park dedicated to the Thoroughbred industry that contains seven life-size and lifelike bronze racehorses streaking toward the finish line, while broodmares, foals and the great stallion Lexington graze in a nearby field. All sculptures were created by celebrated artist Gwen Reardon. 42 plaques honoring historic figures in the industry are placed along winding walkways. Thoroughbred Park is a great spot to wander and to get some great photos!
  • Phoenix Park is in the geographic center of downtown and located adjacent to the Central Public Library. Design is underway for park improvements, stay tuned for more information!
  • Henry A. Tandy Centennial Park is a block off of the trail. It was named for an African American stone mason Henry Tandy. This green space and pavilion hosts a ton of events such as Thursday Night Live, the Lexington's Farmers' Market and the Latin Festival. The entertainment area is surrounded by bars and restaurants and adjacent to the historic Courthouse Square.
  • Triangle Park is a hub of activity for chess and backgammon, special events, surfing the net with free WiFi and enjoying the rushing fountains. Outdoor cafe and ice rink are open seasonally. Learn more about this park's design and offerings on the Triangle Park's website.
  • Central Bank Center & Rupp Arena has over 200,000 sq. ft. of versatile banquet, exhibition and meeting space. The Convention Center and two attached convention hotels occupy a common corner, within easy walking distance to shopping, dining and entertainment destinations. Home to the 2012 NCAA Men’s Basketball Champions, the University of Kentucky Wildcats, Rupp Arena offers dozens of staging and seating configurations for all types of events. Check out the Central Bank Center's website for upcoming events and to plan your visit!
  • Gatton Park on the Town Branch (COMING SOON!) is the signature park at the western most part of the Town Branch Commons. As both a green oasis in downtown Lexington and an active space that will serve all kinds of users, this park will be the anchor to Town Branch Commons. The park will occupy more than nine acres of space between the expanded Lexington Convention Center and Oliver Lewis Way. This signature park is being funded by private donors committed to the success of the park, and efforts are being led by the Town Branch Fund, a private organization. Learn more about the status of this project at the Gatton Park on the Town Branch website. 



Design and Construction Contact

Brandi Peacher  | (859) 258-3150

Operations & Maintenance Contact

Crystal Williams Goodwin | (859) 425-2558