St. Matthews lots up for auction after decades of no new construction

Published: Aug. 12, 2014 at 8:32 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 26, 2014 at 9:09 PM EDT
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The four lots of land are located off of Westport Road in St. Matthews. (Source: WAVE 3 News)
The four lots of land are located off of Westport Road in St. Matthews. (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Terrie Lee (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Terrie Lee (Source: WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Lots of land have been sitting vacant in St. Matthews since the 1980s. Many people believed the lots could not be built on, but it turns out that's not the case. Now, up to four lucky bidders could soon call the lots of land home.

The scenic view Terrie Lee has enjoyed for years from her front porch could soon be blocked by several new additions.

"Can you imagine a house this size, put on those lots?" questioned Lee while gesturing toward her own home on Westgate Place. "It just doesn't fit."

Lee said her family sold ownership of four lots of land along the 1000 block of Westgate Place after uncovering a water main during construction.

"We sold the land to the water company because we couldn't build on it," said Lee. "There hasn't been any change, but suddenly now it's okay to build on it."

"We have a couple bids on these properties already," said Bill Menish, of Sperry Van Ness Menish Auctions.

Menish, who is helping auction off the land online, said the notion that it was ever off limits is a misunderstanding.

"There's a 48-inch water main that actually is the water supply for Louisville, Kentucky that's in an easement in the very back of this property, but I've also been given--and you can see on the website--these drawings that show that houses can indeed be built to fit on these properties," said Menish.

"You would have no yard," said Lee. "None what so ever."

The auction left neighbors like Lee questioning "why here" and "why now?" Simply put, the Louisville Water Company no longer needs the space.

"We held on to the property for many years thinking that we might need it for out water operations. We've determined now that we don't need the property, but before we put the property up to be sold we did a feasibility study," said Louisville Water Company Communications Director Kelley Dearing Smith. "We wanted to make sure it was okay for somebody to build on this property. So we completed that. We determined that you can build on this piece of land so that's why this property is for sale."

"Nobody's pleased with this," said Lee. "We will be having a meeting."

While the auction is not sitting well with Lee, it has drawn interest from realtors and prospective new neighbors looking to break ground in Windy Hills for the first time in years.

According to Lee, neighbors plan to hold a meeting later in the week to weigh their options. The auction, however, is already accepting online bids through August 26. To check out the auction, click here.

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