Neighborhood Review: Creekside at Andover

When I was a teenager, I use to love to drive my 1978 Chevy LUV truck out Todds Road.  This is when nothing was on Todds Road except farms.  It was black with white wagon wheels and the trendy bright stripes that were so popular in the 70s.  My Dad bought it new.  I thought it was the coolest thing in the world when he got it.  I still liked it when I got it in the mid 80s, even though rust was quickly claiming the black paint.  The bright stripes had faded too.  The red looked orange.  The orange looked yellow.  The yellow looked like a rotting lemon.

This isn’t my exact truck, but it is the closest thing I could find online.

luv-side

 

I use to drive out to a road I think was called Athens-Chilesburg.  It ran between Todds Road and Winchester Road.  It doesn’t really matter now because that road is currently two dead end roads.  On the Winchester Road side it is called Walnut Grove.  It is Deer Haven on the Todds Road side….although the Todds Road expansion has just ripped up where it connects to Todds Road.

 

Here is an old map I have.  Notice that Man O War ends at Todds Road.  Liberty and Todds do not connect.  There is no Hamburg.

map

 

All of this gets me to the real topic of this post.  A neighborhood called Creekside at Andover that one day replaced a field and a barn I use to drive past.  I’ve got a couple of friends who live there.  Here are my thoughts on it.

Use to be this neighborhood was very popular because it was the most affordable way to get the highly desirable combination of Athens-Chilesburg Elementary, Hayes Middle and Henry Clay.  For the Hamburg area, this was THE trifecta of schools.  Just like everything, time marches on.  Today, the district is Garret Morgan Elementary, Hayes Middle and the new high school being built on Winchester Road.  I think time will prove that this new district is just as desirable.

A client who I have become friends with lives in Creekside at Andover.  Yes, she did buy out here so her son could go to Henry Clay, but she has found other things she really loves about her neighborhood.

Since it is right off of Deer Haven, she can walk down that old country Road that I use to drive on when it was Athens-Chilesburg.  You immediately feel like you are in the country….especially if you look east since that is the edge of the urban service area.  It is a short walk to that broken line in the above picture.  That old train track is a tree lined walking trail now.  It goes from Walnut Grove, cuts across Polo Club, passes by the city park on Pleasant Ridge and ends up over in Hamburg.  Being able to experience the bluegrass is one of the best things about life in Lexington, and you’ve got a remnant of it here.

Having lived in both Greenbrier and Andover Hills, one of my favorite things about this neighborhood is how easy it is to not only get to Hamburg, but how easy it is to also AVOID Hamburg.  If you want to go to the new side of Hamburg by Costco, exit your neighborhood towards Polo Club and a few stops signs and one light later, you are there.  If you want to get to the main side of Hamburg, exit your neighborhood on Todds Road and you are there quickly.  Want to go somewhere else in Lexington?  Go out Todds Road and cut through Chilesburg and Stuart Hall on Hayes Blvd to get to Richmond Road…..totally bypassing Hamburg.  Since I like driving in the country, another perk for me is that you are on the edge of town.  Turn east on Todds Road and you are instantly in the county.  This would be great for people who enjoy bicycling too.

Most of the houses in Creekside at Andover fall between about 1300 and 2300 square feet.  Seems to me that most are around 1800-2000 square feet from what I see come on the market.  They were build in the mid 2000s. There are some townhouses in the neighborhood too.  Prices on the townhouses have been around $140k recently.  That is a good entry point for first time buyers.  The other houses are all between $170k and $200k.  There are a few basement lots, mostly the ones near the top of Deer Haven and Wargrave Walk.  Those are around $225k.

Here is a very typical home in Creekside at Andover.  This model is very popular because you get a great big vaulted great room and a HUGE bedroom or bonus space over the garage.  I have seen it be one giant room as well as divided into two rooms.

creekside

Well, that is it for today.  I guess in another 25 years I will blog about driving my gas powered, non-autonomous Audi through this neighborhood and remembering when all the trees were small and how it was on the edge of town back then.  I may even keep a map from today so I can show what it was like.

 

LEXborhoods: Beaumont Park

It’s the mid 1960s.  You’re out shopping for a brand new house.  You’ve got a nice budget.  You like the new booming southwest side of town, maybe because you want to be close to one of those new shopping things called a mall.  There is a brand new one on Harrodsburg Road called Turfland Mall.

You go on whatever the 60s version of the parade of new homes was called and you end up in Beaumont Park.  You like it because it is on the edge of town, right by the new beltline.  It is a little bare since all the trees are 4 feet tall, but that is okay because the houses have all those trendy features like a pass through between the kitchen and family room.  A private master bathroom.  Maybe faux wood beams and a fireplace that takes up a whole wall in the family room.

No surprise here, but NONE of these things are why anybody would pick Beaumont Park today.

Instead of being on the edge of town, it is considered close to town since it is inside that beltline called New Circle Road.

Those freshly planted twigs are now some of the most majestic trees in town.

Turfland Mall isn’t a mall any more, but is still an asset.

Today, people want to live in one of the 160 or so houses in Beaumont Park for very different reasons.  The location is great.  The tree lined streets are very pretty.  You get some of that mid-century coolness……but most of all it is because the lots are huge by today’s standards. (There is also a great city park in the middle of the neighborhood too.)

Before I show you a sample of some pictures I found online, I better tell you that most of the houses range from $200-300k depending on how big they are and how much they have been updated.  I have been in several.  Some have funky floor plans, so don’t.  Some are mostly original and others have been updated.

I wish all neighborhoods could age as well as Beaumont Park.

 

Check out how far away the houses are from the street.

13

 

A city park with big trees right in the middle of the neighborhood.

15

 

The depth of this backyard is pretty common.

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Another huge backyard.

MercuryImages.com

MORE similar neighborhoods at different price points

Let’s say you want to be in that sweet spot of the Tates Creek area where you’re equidistant to Hamburg, Fayette Mall and downtown.  You want a traditional house.  Southern Living.  Nice yard with big trees.  I’ve got three more neighborhoods for you at three different price points…..Here we go:

Hartland

I remember when Hartland was brand new.  It was way the heck out there.  (It hasn’t moved closer-I mean that it seemed way out at the time.)  Man O War was a two lane road.  There was no Tates Creek Shopping Center.  Who knew back then that this neighborhood would age so wonderfully.  The design is like nothing Lexington has seen since Chevy Chase.  The main roads have a tree lined median.  All the cul-de-sacs have landscaped islands.  It just feels wonderful out there. The price range for Hartland and all the derivative sub-neighborhoods is about $250k through close to $2,000,000.  Most are in the $300-500k range.  For that, you get a nice big house from the time when J.R. Ewing was shot on Dallas.  Big yards are the norm.  Most I’ve seen are 1/4-1/3 acre.  There is a neighborhood pool/clubhouse.

Here is what you can expect:

 

Cumberland Hill

Built about the same time as Hartland, just on the other side of Tates Creek Road.  Cumberland has a more casual, less pretentious vibe to it than Hartland.  Its the neighborhood for somebody who can afford a Mercedes but drives a Volvo instead.  Being on the other side of Tates Creek turned out to be a good thing, because it gets the very desirable Veteran’s Park Elementary school.  Most of the houses range from the low $200s to the low $300s.  For around or just over $300k, you should expect a nice basement.  One of the coolest things about this neighborhood is that it backs up to Veteran’s Park (The park-not the school.)  At the end of Rockbridge, there is a small parking lot with an entrance to the park.  There is a walking trail and a creek through the wooded areas.  There are a couple of bridges across the creek.  It is very cool.  A pool/clubhouse are at the corner of Tates Creek and Rockbridge.

Here is what to expect:

Contemporary homes were still a little popular in the 80s, so you see a few like this.

 

Ashmoor

This neighborhood is just south of Cumberland and is also across Tates Creek Road from Hartland.  You get the same close proximity to Veteran’s Park and it is in Veteran’s Park Elementary district.  Ashmoor has always seemed like a lite version of Hartland to me.  The houses are similar, just smaller.  My favorite thing about this neighborhood are the huge Pin Oak trees than line most of the streets.   You’ll be around $200k to maybe $250k out here.

Here is what you will see:

It was the late 80s and early 90s, so you do get some houses that are like a mash up of Traditional and Contemporary.

 

There you have it.  From $200k to $2,000,000, there is a house for you in this area!

 

 

3 similar neighborhoods for any budget

What if you want a big lot, close in, something older, maybe Tates Creek Road area.  Well, you have three good options at 3 different price points.

All these neighborhoods are either just inside or just outside New Circle Road by Tates Creek Road.  All are close to things like The Lansdowne Shoppes, Malones, Fresh Market and The Signature Club.  One of the best things about this area is that you can get about anywhere in town easily.  UK/Downtown/Chevy Chase are close.  You are between Hamburg and all that the Fayette Mall/Nicholasville Road corridor offers…..plus, this is arguably the prettiest part of Lexington.

1.  Lansdowne

This is where you go if you have $300-700k to spend.  You’ll get one of the swankiest locations from the 1960s that use to be on the on the edge of town.  I’m taking about roads like Cahaba, Kirkland, Overbrook, etc.  Getting a half acre lot is no sweat here, some are even larger.  Overbrook Circle and Brookhill Circle are my two favorite streets since some of the houses have a view over The Lansdowne Shoppes.

Most of the houses are ranches, but there are 2 story and split foyer/split levels too.  Here is what is typical:

But sometimes you get lucky and find some real architectural gems like:

2.  Lans-Merrick

This is where you land if you want to stay in the $200s-$300s, although there are a few super nice ones that have gone for over $400k.  This neighborhood is right across Tates Creek Road from Lansdowne.   You get a great city park in the middle of the neighborhood which is right beside Julius Marks Elementary school.  Lots out here are usually in the 1/4-1/3 acre range.  Still big by Lexington standards.  Most of the houses were built in the 70s.  Lots of ranches, splits and traditional two stories.  The main roads are Pepperhill and Montavesta.  Fleetwood and Heritage are my favorite streets.

 

Here is what to expect:

But there are some that are like:

 

3.  Gainesway

This neighborhood is beside Lans-Merrick, but is just across New Circle.  It seems just as close in though, so don’t let being outside the circle mess with you.  The oldest part of Gainesway harks back to the 50s.  All the streets were named after local horse farms.  Getting a 1/4-1/2 acre lot is easy here.  Most are ranches.  The beauty of this neighborhood is that you get a similar location and lot size as the other two, but you’ll only drop $150-250k for a house.  Castleton Hill and Castleton Way are my favorite streets here.

This is what to expect:

And you might get lucky and find one like these:

 

So there you have it.  Whether you have $150k or well over $500k, you can enjoy an older home on a large lot in Lexington.

LEXpert’s top picks for around $350k

At the bottom of the market just a few years ago, it seemed like $350k was a HUGE budget.  It still gets you a very nice house, but most of the popular choices like Firebrook, Palomar, Hartland, Andover Forest and Chevy Chase are now well over $400k for a fairly updated home.

Here are a few neighborhoods that I always like to make sure my $350k buyers are aware of:

Dogwood Hills-This is an 80’s neighborhood with large traditional houses located out Harrodsburg Road across from Firebrook.  I’ve always described Dogwood Hills as upscale but not pretentious.  It just has a comfortable, cozy vibe to it that I have always found appealing.   You’ve got a great southwest Lexington location, there is a shopping center with a Kroger right next door, and you have a great city park in the back of the neighborhood.

Rabbit Run-This is a late 80s/early 90s neighborhood.  I am taking about Wellington Lane, part of Wellington Way, Meadowbrook Drive, Meadowbrook Court, Comanche Trail, Comanche Court, Blenheim Way and Blenheim Court.  Rabbit Run does have a section of medium sized houses on small lots.  There is also an adjoining neighborhood whose real name is Saint Stephen’s Green at Rabbit Run….but most people call it all Rabbit Run these days.  Now that I have cleared up all that, what do I like about it?  Like Dogwood Hills, it does have that cozy, comfortable upscale vibe to it.  I think it’s best feature is the location.  It is right in the middle of everything you want on the southwest end of Lexington.  Both Man O War and New Circle Road are minutes away.  You can sneak in the back way to get to Fayette Mall without ever being on Nicholasville Road.  You have all the great things that Harrodsburg Road offers very close, such as the YMCA, library, restaurants, gym, grocery stores…even a hardware store.

Lansdowne-This neighborhood has become very trendy.  $350k doesn’t go as far as it use to here.  What makes it special is that you get a mid-century neighborhood with large lots inside New Circle Road and close to UK, downtown and Chevy Chase.  You can also get to about anything on Nicholasville Road by taking one of the side streets like Zandale, Malabu or Reynolds Road.  A popular spot for many residents is the Signature Club.  It has a great swimming pool.  You can enjoy the club even if you are not a member and dine in “The Cellar.”  As if this location was not ideal enough, you are very close to The Lansdowne Shoppes which has several amazing businesses such as The Fresh Market (One of my favorite grocery stores-great sushi!)

Stonewall-This is my default suggestion when people tell me they want a safe neighborhood with good performing schools and they want a huge yard in south Lexington.  I guess it is my default because it is about the only neighborhood that meets all that criteria.  Stonewall is a 1960s neighborhood that use to be just outside of Lexington.  Just beyond Stonewall is a 70s neighborhood called Grasmere.  Some people think Grasmere is part of Stonewall, but it isn’t.  Grasmere has a similar feel to it, although the lots are a little smaller and the houses are about 10 years newer.  It is a little cheaper too.  When Stonewall won’t fit in your budget, look in Grasmere.  Stonewall is right off Clays Mill Road just outside of New Circle.  It is just a few minutes away from Rabbit Run, so you get all the same location perks.