Throwback Thursday – Lovers Lane in Bowling Green

One of Bowling Green’s fastest growing thoroughfares is the Lovers Lane area. In Throwback Thursday this week, we go back and take a closer look at the road’s 150-year history and how it became known as Lovers Lane.

In the 1890s, the pike that connected Bowling Green to Scottsville, now known as Scottsville Road, was a toll road. Bowling Green area locals petitioned the County Court to build another means to travel toward Scottsville by avoiding the extra toll cost. As a solution, both the bridge over Drakes Creek and a new gravel road were built, connecting the bridge to the Scottsville pike.

The gravel road was considered one of the most scenic routes in the area, through undeveloped farmland outside the city limits. The road became known as Lovers Lane by the 1920s, a place where couples would court and take long drives. The Bowling Green newspaper reported a story about it in 1924, saying that lovers are “wont to drive along its smooth surface and do their billing and cooing.”

Lovers Lane was paved in the 1960s, just in time for the American muscle car era and the growing popularity of drag racing. Many locals took advantage of the new pavement and straight drive to race their cars when they weren’t dragging at Beech Bend.

The Lovers Lane area grew with neighborhoods and commercial buildings because of its ease of access to both I-65 and Scottsville Road. Lovers Lane Soccer Complex opened in 1996, the Bowling Green airport borders the road, and Fruit of the Loom’s international headquarters was built here. In 2009, $14 million was invested to expand the two-lane highway into four, creating its biggest boom yet.