WKYT Exclusive | What is that steel structure behind a brick house on Tates Creek Road?

The structure behind this 1,500-square-foot home on Tates Creek has attracted a lot of attention.
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - There's a 1,500-square-foot home on Tates Creek that has attracted a lot of attention.

But it's not the brick house that is getting all of the attention; it's the structure behind the house that is turning heads along Tates Creek. The steel structure behind the home is about 4,600-square-feet, and it peeks above the smaller home that sits in front.

"You can see people looking out their windows trying to see what it is," said Lee Chapman, the man who's renting the home out front. Chapman said the plans were already in the works for the structure when he moved into the rental back in November.

"It's a conversation started, that's for sure," Chapman said.

And a conversation is just what you'll get from the man who's building the steel structure.

Michell Barnes said when he was sitting in a hospital bed back in early 2000s after being jumped by several men in Lexington, he thought, "Gee, I've always wanted to buy a Ferrari. I got money sitting in the bank and no kids, no wife and nothing to do. I'll just buy one."

Eventually one Ferrari turned into 38 cars, mostly Italian models.

Less than two years ago, Barnes sold his business, which included a warehouse where he kept his cars. After that, his plans for the backyard started taking shape.

"It's something I dreamed up," he said.

He showed WKYT's Miranda Combs renderings for the garage. It will hold 34 of his 38 cars, and and a glass house will be attached to the back of the garage.

When asked why so much for a garage, Barnes said "because I want it."

The garage has five-ton doors, meant to lead to what he pictures as a dining hall in a castle. The floors are marble and solid chestnut beams line the ceiling of the garage.
There's a lot of work to do on the glass house. He doesn't know when the entire project will be completed, but it is where he will reside.

"It's legal," he was sure to point out. "100 percent legal."

Most people we spoke to asked how building something like this would be possible. So WKYT went to Fayette County Planning and Zoning for answers.

Jonathan Hollinger says there are few restrictions in regard to what can be built on each plot in Barnes' neighborhood.

"So within that box, you can build 35 feet tall and there's really no together restrictions on the property," Hollinger said.