Being your resident girl-on-the-go, I attended a community meeting to discuss improvements along Broadway on November 1. These improvements could mean a huge change for North Knoxville and being a born and raised Fountain City girl, the notion means a lot to me. Admittedly, Broadway could use some updating, but I think we need to be very careful to preserve the character of the area and especially those things that fall into the category of being historic.
I was surprised to find more than 150 other curious people in attendance and saw several City Councilmen and County Commissioners, as well as Mayor Madeline Rogero.
The City folks outlined the plan as involving three stages or sections; Section 1 will include Hall of Fame Drive to Cecil Avenue; Section 2 will include Cecil Avenue to Chicago Avenue; lastly, Section 3 will include Chicago Avenue to Branson Avenue. The general improvements for the areas involve neighborhood entries, pedestrian scale lighting, better sidewalks, reduced curb cuts, adding street trees, landscape mediums and protected crosswalks. Each section will have its own particular plan, such as adding bridges and developing more green ways to connect everything together. Hopefully, the end result will be a more livable, viable area that will make it much easier for folks to get around by walking and riding bikes.
You think it sounds too good to be true? Well, darlings, there is a catch to all this. None of this is in the City of Knoxville’s budget; what the community wants is for investors to invest in the area. Nobody would like to see Knoxville grow responsibly than I, but I wonder if there are enough investors with really deep pockets willing to put up the cold, hard cash?
This seems like a lot of good ideas – – – an interesting notion, but just how practical it is remains to be seen. I foresee many more meetings and lots of prayer to get this idea up and running.