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602 S. Gay Street
Knoxville, TN 37902
I grew up in the West Haven area of Knoxville. In my late twenties I left K’ville for about 25 years. I moved back here about eight years ago. I now once again live in the Fountain City/Inskip area. I travel on East Inskip Road frequently as it is a route to the interstate and also Clinton Highway.
I am amazed that on East Inskip Road the masterminds of city planning are continuing to issue building permits for apartment developments, retirement condominiums, and duplex dwellings. This is a two-lane road with no center turn lane. The current pavement is crude and in ill repair. This road crosses Central Avenue and links to Clinton Highway. This stretch includes a poorly designed zig-zag curve that just cries out for accidents. Young children wait for the school bus during the early morning hours at this juncture. The traffic in this neighborhood continues to grow with the addition of countless developments and absolutely no improvement in the roadway.
Having spent my youth in the lower quadrant of the working middle-class, I am always amazed that this area of town is ignored. Clinton Highway is a major artery connecting the northwestern ’burbs with the downtown and major interstate junctions. With just a bit of foresight, this corridor could develop from an eyesore to a viable, thriving roadway with apartments, shopping, etc. The Central Avenue roadway could be developed using common-sense planning to be a remarkable link from Powell all the way into downtown as a secondary surface route.
Perhaps someone on your staff could do a series of articles on this area. I am tired of seeing hordes of redevelopment dollars directed to the eastern area of town and returning little if any dollar-generating results. The area I have described is full of hard-working families with the same dreams as our East, South, and West Knoxville residents. We may be a bit more blue-collar, but our hands-on education and common-sense lifestyle leaves us appalled at the approach our city officials are taking concerning a potentially viable commercial and residential area in which we reside.
I would encourage our new mayor to carpool with a few folks from city planning and take a ride out our way. Perhaps in clear daylight they could see the urgent need and the overwhelming potential of this area.