In the early 1980âs, after purchasing a building to serve as offices for his electrical company, Randy Walker took notice of the many neglected neighboring properties and their various stages of disrepair. In an effort to return the neighborhood to its former glory as a hub for local Lexington businesses, Randy established the R.T. Warehouse Company and began purchasing properties with the intention of renovating and reviving the district. Several years later, Randyâs sons, Chad and Greg, joined the company and Walker Properties was born.
For decades, warehouses along North Ashland, National, and Walton Avenues were home to many industrial businesses such as Middlewest Freight, J.T. Perry Lumber, the Biscuit Company, and the John G. Epping Bottling Company. With a strong background in construction, the initial phase of Walker Propertiesâ vision was to repair and renovate these forgotten former Lexington landmarks and bring new purpose to them.
Following approval from the city of Lexington for an Adaptive Reuse Overlay, the area became the second neighborhood in Lexington to evolve from a heavy industry zone to one whose infill allowed for creative design studios, art galleries, wellness centers, retail outlets, eateries, and many other formerly restricted business uses. In the short time since acquiring the Adaptive Reuse Overlay, Walker Properties has transformed what was once a highly industrial area into a now thriving centrally located business community. Fitness facilities, creative offices, art lofts, yoga studios, jewelers, pottery supply stores, and even a ballet studio are all among the vast array of new business that have gravitated towards Lexingtonâs most innovative neighborhood.