KY 536 Study
Click to view larger mapKY 536 extends from Boone County through Kenton County all the way to Campbell County. This 11-mile corridor is one of the few main east‐west connectors in Kenton County, and the only direct connection south of I‐275 between the three northern Kentucky counties. While it is possible to use KY 536 to travel east‐west across the county currently, it is a 2‐lane road that is windy and includes many stop signs. The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) is currently working to expand the western half of KY 536 from its current 2‐lane configuration to a 4‐lane configuration from the Boone County line to KY 17. Funding for all phases of the project is approved except for construction, which is estimated at $48,000,000. The Ohio‐Kentucky‐Indiana Regional Council of Governments (OKI) commenced a year‐long scoping study for the eastern half of KY 536 in September 2014, which will include identifying two to three roadway alternatives, cost estimates for design, right of way, utilities, construction phases, and environmental and social impacts.

Along its route are several different forms of development. The western portion is surrounded primarily by suburban residential developments. The central portion passes through the commercial center of Independence, which was the fastest growing city in Kentucky in the mid‐2000s. The eastern portion passes through some very rural parts of the county. Kenton County’s Comprehensive Plan, Direction 2030, recommends that the impact and opportunities of the KY 536 roadway project on adjacent communities be studied prior to its completion.


PDS is collaborating with a University of Cincinnati studio class in the College of Design, Art, Architecture, and Planning to develop a plan for KY 536. The Vision Plan for KY 536 Environs will examine the potential impact of the expansion of a major east-west corridor across the middle and southern portions of Kenton County, Kentucky. Students will explore a number of planning issues that are critical in understanding the socio-cultural, ecological, economic and political structure of the environment. A key component of the project will be to engage the public in these discussions, with a number of different opportunities being explored. A $4,000 grant from the Murray and Agnes Seasongood Good Government Foundation will cover costs associated with this study.

The final report will not be formally adopted by any Board, Commission, or Legislative Body. The final report will generate creative ideas from students that can be used for further planning along the KY 536 corridor in the future.

Studio timeline

The studio commenced in January and is scheduled to last the entire spring semester (16 weeks) with formal class times twice a week. The final four weeks of the studio will include numerous presentations to the public and to Kenton County planning and legislative bodies.

Studio process

The basic structure of the studio is divided into a 5-step process. The processes are as follows:
  • SENSING: information and data collection; mapping - people, places, phenomena
  • ANALYZING: organizing, structuring and synthesizing information and data
  • THEORIZING: values, goals, objectives, visions
  • MAKING: processes, products
  • COMMUNICATING: writing, speaking, graphics

Please explore each of these processes for more information on the process and the students’ work.

In the news

Due to copyrighted material, the following articles are available on the Cincinnati Enquirer's website
  • OKI plan could create Kenton opportunities – July 17, 2014
  • Money sought for NKY cross-county highway – April 5, 2014
  • Safety at heart of Ky. 536 study – January 5, 2015
  • Rural Kenton concerned about future Ky. 536 – April 20, 2015

Insights & Outlooks - PDS news articles

External links

OKI Scoping Study 
Kenton County Transportation Plan
University of Cincinnati School of Planning

More information

If you have questions about the information presented in these files please contact James Fausz for further details.