Displaying items by tag: south knoxville
Infamous South Knoxville Superfund site will soon take first steps on long road to recovery
EPA plans to contain toxic waste and restore waterways; community group will offer guidance
KNOXVILLE — A crowd gathered in the South Knoxville Community Center to hear the Environmental Protection Agency’s long-awaited remediation plan for Smoky Mountain Smelting and its hazardous waste. Others tuned in via the Internet.
The meeting called by Vestal Community Organization took place Feb. 13. The EPA’s presentation and many questions focused on the former Smoky Mountain Smelting site at 1508 Maryville Pike near Montgomery Village Apartments.
Heather Duncan Nelson reported last year for Hellbender Press on the initial cleanup plans.
But citizens this week raised concerns about other contaminated former industrial properties along the same road. Vestal Community Organization plans to hold another meeting at 6 p.m. Feb. 22 to discuss and decide its position on these Maryville Pike properties.
“I was just thrilled and enamored by the way people were listening to the questions and answers,” said Eric Johnson with Vestal Community Organization, adding that he was referring both to the EPA and the citizens.
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Knoxville kids go beast mode at new natural playscape
New Ijams playground reconnects kids with neighborhood woods, forts and creeks of yore
KNOXVILLE — Ijams Nature Center officially opened a portal into pure childhood beast mode this week.
The Ijams Nature Playscape at Grayson Subaru Preserve is specifically designed for young children to play in a creek, climb hills, dig, build, crawl and engage with nature in an organic, unstructured way. The new space features a large nest, tunnels, log steps and different rooms to play in.
“For generations, many of us had the opportunity to roam and play in the woods, empty lots and fields that surrounded our homes and neighborhoods,” Ijams Executive Director Amber Parker said. “We remember the freedom we had to use our imagination, test ourselves and become a part of the natural landscape, at least until we were called home for dinner.”
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Mountain bikers plan campground in South Knoxville’s Urban Wilderness
Project would burnish Knoxville’s outdoor credentials
A group of local outdoor enthusiasts intend to establish a “bike-in bike-out” campground and construct an amenity-filled clubhouse and nature exhibits on 16 acres adjacent to Knoxville’s Urban Wilderness.
Carter Miller, a South Knoxville native, is the project’s general manager, partnering with locals Eva Millwood and Bryan Foster to craft the space on Sevierville Pike.
They gently dropped their “Drop Inn” concept Saturday at the Appalachian Mountain Bike Club fall festival in South Knoxville.
“We’re stepping out today with our new project that’s been in the works this year... it’s gaining momentum, and we are really, *really* stoked about it!” Millwood said on social media.
“So it’s The Drop Inn, Knoxville’s first on-trail bike-in, bike-out campground in the urban wilderness. A total of 16 acres adjacent to Marie Myers and William Hastie parks, with trail connectors along the Year Round Get Down.
Millwood said a formal media announcement is planned soon.
This article has been edited for clarity.
Knoxville Mayor Indya Kincannon’s budget calls for $30m in environmental-improvement measures
Mayor wants green for green; some otherwise supportive city residents already aren’t pleased with some initiatives.
KNOXVILLE — Mayor Indya Kincannon’s proposed Knoxville 2020-2021 budget commits some $30 million to reduce city climate impacts, expand its use of renewable energy, invest in urban forest preservation and outdoor recreation assets and improve bus and bicycle travel in communities across the city. The budget also provides money for revitalization of the Burlington District, a historic pedestrian center of Black commerce in East Knoxville.
The city’s net budget is $384 million, which includes a $253 million operating fund.
The budget is just a recommendation to City Council at this point.
City to add new sidewalks and other measures to promote walkability on South Knoxville waterfront
Walk it out: Knoxville plans $10m in streetscape, transportation improvements along Tennessee River in SoKno
The city announced March 24 it will soon embark on part of an ultimately $10 million project to improve walkability and pedestrian safety in the burgeoning South Knoxville waterfront community.
The improvements aim to better connect Sevier Avenue with the waterfront, and include sidewalk construction on main neighborhood streets, better lighting and curb and drainage work near Suttree Landing Park, according to a release from the city. It’s part of a long-term plan to install and improve sidewalks and bike lanes and generally make the area less dependent on automobiles. Aesthetic improvements such as the relocation of overhead utilities are also planned.
“Connectivity and walkability on and near the South Waterfront are important,” said city Deputy Chief of Economic and Community Development Rebekah Jane Justice. “Here on Waterfront Drive, a privately-developed apartment community is planned, but these public sidewalks and other upgrades will benefit the entire community. It’s a step in the right direction toward making it easier for pedestrians to get between Suttree Landing Park and Sevier Avenue,” Justice said in a press release.
“In the coming few years, the city will be investing $10 million in a streetscape overhaul of Sevier Avenue – relocating unsightly overhead utility lines and adding bike lanes, improved sidewalks, street lighting, on-street parking and a new roundabout at the Sevier Avenue, Island Home Avenue and Foggy Bottom Street intersection,” according to the release.
Here’s the rest of the announcement from the city:
“By the end of the year, new sidewalks will be constructed on sections of Waterfront Drive, Langford Avenue, Dixie Street and Empire Street – a $733,263 project that also will add new streetlights and drainage, curb and utility upgrades in the area near Suttree Landing Park on the South Waterfront.
Knoxville City Council last evening on March 23 authorized Mayor Indya Kincannon’s administration to execute an agreement with Design and Construction Services Inc., the company submitting the lowest, most responsive bid to do the Waterfront Drive Roadway Improvements Project.
Work on Claude and Barber streets in the vicinity will be undertaken as funding becomes available.
This type of project, Justice said, is a good example of the City investing strategically to advance one of Mayor Indya Kincannon’s core priorities – building healthy and connected neighborhoods.
One of those planned private investments is South Banks, an apartment community that Dominion Group hopes to construct by next year off Waterfront Drive.
Connecting the Sevier Avenue commercial corridor with Suttree Landing Park by improving public infrastructure between the two points is a short-term city objective. It’s the first of much more to come.”