The Bluegrass Parkway named in honor of Governor Martha Layne Collins
LEXINGTON, KY — (September 18, 2003) — Friends and family joined Governor Paul E. Patton, Governor Louie B. Nunn and Kentucky Transportation Cabinet Secretary James C. Codell, III in a dedication ceremony today to honor Governor Martha Layne Collins. The Bluegrass Parkway was officially renamed the Martha Layne Collins Bluegrass Parkway in appreciation of her service to the Commonwealth of Kentucky.
Governor Collins was elected as the first and only female governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky in 1983, a distinction which she still holds today. During her tenure Governor Collins is credited with establishing education reform and economic development as critical priorities. Highlights of her career include, bringing Toyota Motor Manufacturing to Kentucky, passage of a $300 million education reform package, and the creation of record numbers of jobs and investments throughout the state.
"It takes a very special person to have a road named after them, and GovernorCollins is a very special person to the people of Kentucky," said Secretary James C. Codell, III. Secretary Codell also added, "The Transportation Cabinet is very thankful to her (Governor Collins) for standing behind the projects and initiatives that have improved the quality of life in Kentucky."
Governor Paul E. Patton echoed Secretary Codell’s statement saying, "It’s a privilege and a honor to be here today to celebrate one of Kentucky’s finest public servants. Some of the primary responsibilities of both government and a governor are to provide citizens with the quality educational programs, transportation infrastructure, and social programs they need to support the demands of their busy lives. As Governor, Martha Layne Collins exceeded these responsibilities." Governor Patton also added, "Governor Collins has dedicated her entire life to public service. Her passion and commitment to educational and economic excellence has benefited all Kentuckians. It was Governor Collins’ tireless efforts during her administration that paved the way for KERA, the revolutionary reform of our K-12 education system, and for the locating of one of Japans’ premier corporations to central Kentucky, Toyota Motor Manufacturing."
The Martha Layne Collins Bluegrass Parkway was constructed in the mid 1960’s and is maintained by two Department of Highway Districts, District 4 located out of Elizabethtown and District 7 located out of Lexington. The Parkway is 75 miles in length and has an average daily traffic volume of 18,000 vehicles per day, of which 20 percent is commercial truck traffic. In conjunction with the Wendell H. Ford Western Kentucky Parkway, the Martha Layne Collins Bluegrass Parkway provides a vital economic and social connector for both Western and Central Kentucky.