|Home for "Old Smokey" or for something else?|
Recently, the guys from Corman approached the City and requested a Certificate of Occupancy for the new "glass house" that they have been building in the Lexington Center Parking lot (see photo above). As a common carrier, the railroad is generally exempt from rules that apply to you and me and are allowed to build just about anything that they want in the name of rail commerce.
Such is the case in the building of the "glass house". The prep work and excavation for the rail spur under the Oliver Lewis bridge began over two years ago. I speculated then that it could be for a Lexington based version of the Corman Dinner Train, but not a mention was made by the railroad itself. Articles have appeared in the local paper and still no mention of anything but "a place to the steam locomotive".
The "glass house" facility has no obvious ability to service such a locomotive as the mechanical equipment is missing . Even the firing of the boilers looks to be problematic, since the ceiling is that bright pristine white. This structure is definitely designed for some level of public access.
This brings me back to the request of the Certificate of Occupancy which all public building should have and is the final paperwork in the permitting process. Just one hitch, there has been no permit issued for the "glass house". There have been no plans filed for the building and no inspections, you know, that whole "exempt from the rules" thing.
My question is, if they have not bothered with any Permits or Certificates for any of their other buildings (or improvements), why are they now asking for this one? Will this building be host to a steady number of visitors from the public? Why is this a priority now?
This building, from all indications (and the rendering shown accompanying the request) is for the local rendition of a dinner train. From Lexington to the wye at Christiansburg, by way of Midway and Frankfort, and return. More than two and a half times as far as the Bardstown version, though maybe not as interesting in terms of scenery.
We will have a dinner train in Lexington. It is just a question of time.