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Community Facilities Report

Community facilities encompass a wide array of resources dedicated to protecting and enhancing the daily lives of Kenton County residents. These assets range from schools to emergency services or libraries to health care. Each addresses a different need for residents such as education or safety and their presence in the community is vital to the area’s strength and economic competitiveness. Community facilities are present in each of the county’s four sub areas, although to a lesser extent in the rural sub area as lower population density necessitates fewer services. This chapter provides an overview of community facilities as of 2023.


The presence of high quality education facilities are a major contributor to an area’s overall appeal. One of the more direct impacts of quality of education is that it becomes a major consideration for where families with school-aged children or those considering starting a family choose to establish their home. Another important consideration for economic competitiveness in the area is attracting employers to a region. Studies have shown that having an educated workforce is vital to attracting and retaining businesses. If these companies cannot find the well-educated workers they need, they will move to a more competitive region. 

CLICK HERE to view specific Education research updates.


Emergency services make up an important part of an area’s community facilities. Police, fire, and even emergency dispatch coverage could mean the difference between life and death for those in need of the respective service.  

CLICK HERE to view specific Emergency Services research updates.


Kenton County residents are served by three library branches throughout the county. These include the Covington branch in Covington, the Erlanger Branch in Erlanger which recently celebrated its 20th anniversary, and the William E. Durr Branch in Independence. The Independence branch was newly constructed in 2007 and replaced the facility that was located near the Cherokee Plaza shopping center. In 2013 renovations such as the addition of over 12,000 square feet of additional space, an enhanced children’s department, an enhanced local history department, new drive-thru, larger public meeting room, and a new computer lab were completed at the Covington branch. Expansions on the Erlanger branch were completed in early 2018 and included several new meeting rooms and a large makerspace.  Library Journal ranked the Kenton County Public Library for the first time in 2013 and it has continued to be ranked each year. It was the first library in Kentucky to be ranked.


The new Kenton County Government Center was completed in 2019. It is in Covington off Simon Kenton Way between Pike Street and MLK Jr. Boulevard. The building combined new construction with historic renovation. The redevelopment partially utilized the former Bavarian Brewery which was constructed in 1911. The Bavarian Brewery had operated in Covington since the mid-1800s. The project cost around $29 million and is now a one stop shop for Kenton County government services including the Kenton County Fiscal Court, Kenton County PDS (Planning and Development Services), the Kenton County Clerk, and The PVA (Property Valuation Administration).

Several jurisdictions in Kenton County have also built new city buildings, updated existing buildings, or are preparing to build new city buildings. This includes the Lakeside Park City Building, Park Hills City Building, Covington City Building, Elsmere City Building, the Erlanger Public Works Facility, as well as the new Kenton County Health Department Building which is currently being built as of Fall 2023. These updates allow the jurisdictions of Kenton County to continue providing quality services to the citizens of the community.


The trend in healthcare continues to be consolidation of outpatient services, physician specialists, and diagnostic treatment facilities in close proximity to main hospital centers. St. Elizabeth, Northern Kentucky’s largest healthcare provider and only network hospital, has experienced several changes, both physical and in their overall mission, since the mid-2000’s. In 2008 the healthcare provider merged with St. Luke Hospital, gaining facilities in neighboring Boone and Campbell counties. In 2010 the hospital opened a new Covington campus near 12th Street and I-71/75 and closed their facility on East 20th Street. St. Elizabeth Physicians was also established in 2010 after a merger with Summit Medical Group and Patient First. This merger expands St. Elizabeth’s network to nearly 250 physicians and over 1,100 employees, rendering it one of the region’s largest employers. In 2020 the St. Elizabeth Cancer Care Center was opened in Edgewood. The new multi-disciplinary facility is 250,000 square feet and can treat nearly 500 patients per day. In 2021 the 67,000 square-foot Florence Wormald Heart and Vascular Institute at St. Elizabeth was opened on the Edgewood Campus with a goal of decreasing heart-related deaths in Northern Kentucky by 25 percent by 2025.


The Kenton County Fiscal Court funds several programs and services for Kenton County citizens including programs for mental health, intellectual disabilities, and aging. Several social services for all stages of life are also provided through a variety of community organizations located in Northern Kentucky including the Brighton Center, Emergency Shelter of NKY, Northern Kentucky Area Development District, and the Northern Kentucky Community Action Commission. Many of these community organizations provide services such as family services, workforce development, substance abuse recovery, housing and financial wellness, advocacy programs, and nutrition programs. Affordable and emergency housing is also provided for individuals experiencing homelessness or other housing challenges. These organizations and programs seek to help Kenton County residents most in need while also building self-sufficiency and long-term stability to strengthen the community.


Community facilities will continue to play a vital role in the quality of life of Kenton County residents throughout the timeline of the comprehensive plan. Efforts should be taken to strengthen existing amenities and welcome new opportunities when and where appropriate. Providing residents with additional choices and options for these different facilities should be carefully considered.


1. Harrah, J. (2012, July 25). Competition. Simon Kenton High School Auditorium, Independence, Kentucky.

2. Kentucky Department of Education.

3. U.S. News & World Report.

4. Thomas More University. Kentucky Community & Technical College System.

5. Ignite Institute.

6. Gateway Community & Technical College.

7. Gateway Community & Technical College.

8.  The Enquirer. (2022, September 26). Gateway unveils a new welding lab in Covington. Sandel, G. (2012, November 28). Phone Interview Regarding Kenton County Police Department’s Jurisdiction. (J. Fausz, Interviewer)

10. Massey, T. (2012, November 28). Phone Interview Regarding Kenton County Sheriff’s Jurisdiction. (J. Fausz, Interviewer)

12. Kenton County Public Library. (n.d.) History of Kenton County Public Library. Retrieved January 19, 2023, from Kenton County Public Library:

13. St. Elizabeth Healthcare. (n.d.). St. Elizabeth Healthcare History. Retrieved January 19, 2023, from St. Elizabeth Healthcare:

14. Kenton County Government Center Combined History and Modern Functionality at Iconic Covington Site. Northern Kentucky Tribune. Mark Hansel. October 2, 2019.

15. The Historic and Former Bavarian Brewery in Covington Kentucky. Accessed on November 7, 2023 from

16.  Kenton County Human Services. Accessed on December 6, 2023 from

17.  Kenton County Human Services Helpful Resources. Accessed on December 6, 2023 from

18.  Brighton Center – A Community of Support. Accessed on December 6, 2023 from

19.  Northern Kentucky Area Development District. Accessed on December 6, 2023 from

20.  Northern Kentucky Community Action Commission. Accessed on December 6, 2023 from

21. Haney, R. and Carrie Hooten. (2023, January 27). Director of Operations and Support Operations Coordinator. (C. Sheets, Interviewer)

22.Vanover, B. (2023, January 27). Director of Operations. (C. Sheets, Interviewer)

23.Hansman, M. (2023, January 25). Assistant Principal. (C. Sheets, Interviewer)

24. Neff, E. (2023, January 24). School Administrative Manager. (C. Sheets, Interviewer)


Kenton County School District 

  1. Guaranteed Energy Savings Contract to retrofit the HVAC systems at Beechgrove Elementary School, install interior and exterior lighting upgrades at multiple schools, upgrade controls at multiple schools and replace some roofing systems. 
  2. Secure Vestibule Entrances have been constructed at RC Hinsdale Elementary, River Ridge Elementary, and Ryland Heights Elementary. 
  3. Safety and Security installations and upgrades have been completed at all locations Districtwide. 
  4. Major Renovations and additions have been completed at the Fort Wright Elementary, Beechgrove Elementary, Piner Elementary, Ryland Heights Elementary, and White’s Tower Elementary. 
  5. As of the 2023 school year there are no students in Mobile Classrooms in the Kenton County School District. 
  6. Phase I Preschool Classroom Addition has been completed and Phase II is in the planning stages for Renovations and Additions at RC Hinsdale Elementary School. 
  7. Phase III and IV Renovations at Scott High School including construction of a new kitchen and cafeteria, complete renovation of all interior spaces have finished. The Final Phase (Phase V) is underway to complete the new practice gym, auditorium, gymnasium renovations, new Natatorium, and site improvements. 
  8. A new Transportation and Support Operations Facility is underway to replace the 1950’s District Transportation Garage and to provide a safe and secure storage facility for Operations Support, Technology, and Food Service. This new facility will enable KCSD to consolidate transportation services to two sites. 
  9. The District acquired a facility in Crescent Springs to serve the northern portion of the Kenton County School District’s Transportation services. 
  10. Property Acquisitions have been made to improve site circulations at various locations
  11. The District has been leasing space from SD1 since 2004 for its Central Office in order to focus on school improvements aimed toward providing a World Class Education to all of its stakeholders. Property has been acquired to construct a permanent location for the District’s Central Office and planning is in its early stages. 

Ludlow Independent Schools

  1. Approved renovations in 2023 including a 7,309 square foot building addition, a 2,548 square foot addition, and a new playground.

Erlanger-Elsmere Schools 

  1. Howell Elementary school is currently reorienting entrances to the building and reconfiguring interior space for a new office area. 
  2. Lloyd High School is currently on phase 3 of a 5 phase improvement program that started in 2007 and will conclude in approximately 2016. 
  3. Phase 1 of the program added 20,000 square feet of classroom and lab space. 
  4. Phase 2 added just over 11,000 square feet in the form of a commons, kitchen, and cafeteria. 
  5. Phase 3 is currently under construction and will add approximately 19,000 square feet of classrooms and labs. 
  6. Beginning dates for phases 4 and 5 are dependent on financing and are roughly estimated to be complete in 2016. 

Beechwood Independent School District 

  1. Construction of fieldhouse building completed. 
  2. Remodeled and upgraded the kitchen for student food service.
  3. Family and Consumer Sciences classroom remodeled and updated.
  4. New cafeteria built for all grade levels.
  5. Band and music education rooms were added.
  6. Constructed new high school offices.
  7. Added an additional gymnasium facility.
  8. Built new high school entrance for increased security. 
  9. Installed turf surfaces on both the upper and lower field areas.
  10. Upgraded and replaced HVAC systems in the elementary and high school buildings.
  11. Engineering and design lab (IDEA Lab) added to high school.
  12. Expanded outdoor playground area and installed a rubberized surface.
  13. Added a turfed indoor athletic facility to provide greater practice options.  
  14. Completed the addition of twelve new elementary classrooms.
  15. Built a Tiger Zone spirit wear store for public sales and student learning opportunities.
  16. Demolished significant portions of the elementary and high school to construct new school building facilities.  
  17. Currently constructing an auditorium to serve elementary and high school.

Covington Independent Public Schools

  1. Playground upgrades and installs have taken place at the Preschool, 5 Elementary Schools, and the Childcare Center.
  2. Phase I for Holmes High and Middle School included creating secure entry vestibules, football field & track renovations, replaced interior and exterior Senior. Building doors, and several ventilation items.
  3. Guaranteed Energy Savings Contract Phase I upgrades were completed. Energy generated by solar PV arrays will be used to offset the electrical energy cost for these two buildings, John G. Carlisle Elementary School and the Science Building at the Holmes High School Campus, saving the school district an estimated $65,282 a year.  
  4. Renovated Meinken Baseball Field. 
  5. Secure entry vestibules created at the Preschool and all 5 Elementary Schools. 
  6. Roof replacement projects occurred at the Preschool and all 5 Elementary Schools.
  7. Guaranteed Energy Savings Contract Phase II upgrades planned. Energy generated by these solar PV arrays will be used to offset the electrical energy cost for three (3) buildings: Glenn O. Swing Elementary, Latonia Elementary, and Sixth District Elementary. The anticipated completion date is December 2023.
  8. Holmes Campus & Softball Field Project Phase I will include renovating and updating all Holmes High School, Holmes Middle School, and Chapman Vocational.  Reconstructing the softball field to comply with ADA and Title IX on the Holmes Campus. The anticipated start date is June 2023.
  9. Transportation Center / Glenn O. Swing Elementary Project will include renovations to the Transportation Center/Central Bus Garage Complex. The anticipated start date is June 2023.
  10. Holmes Campus Ventilation Project in the Administration Building and the Science and Vocational Building. The anticipated start date is June 2023.

Covington Catholic High School

  1. April 2016 dedication of the new Young Family Tennis Complex.
  2. Groundbreaking for the STEM and Fine Arts wing and Student and Alumni Center on June 2017.
  3. August 2017 Dedication of Dennis Griffin Stadium on August 2017 and first ever home football game played under permanent lights. 
  4. Donation of 1.5 acres of land at the north corner of campus on Dixie Highway by Mike and Traci Kautzman on December 2018.
  5. On January 2019 with the help of several private major donors purchased the adjacent property to the south, known as The Gardens of Park Hills, that included a large attached recreational space that could be used as a fieldhouse or auxiliary gym.
  6. August 2019 Dedication of the Dr. Anthony R. Zembrodt STEM and Fine Arts Center for Academic Excellence wing and the Drees Homes Foundation Student and Alumni Center.
  7. 2020 began fundraising for the renovations for a new fieldhouse as well as improvements to the Baseball stadium.
  8. August 2022 Dedication of the newly renovated fieldhouse.
  9. April 2023 dedication of the new turf baseball field and improvements to the baseball facility.
  10. In a silent fundraising stage for a $4 million matching endowment gifted by an anonymous donor. We have from September of 2021 – September of 2025 to raise $4 million that will then be matched by the anonymous donor for a total of $8 million to be used for academic programs, teacher and student retention and tuition assistance. The endowment, named The Marianist Endowment for Academic Excellence, cannot be used for athletics or bricks and mortar. We are at $2.1m of the $4m goal as of January 2023. 
  11. Funding from the Marianist Endowment will be put towards a new and improved Academic Success Center that will allow learning support for all students. This is still in the planning stages.