With the apparently happy decision to save the L&N from its current underutilized state by making it a high school, Marianne Greene, who operates the nearby Foundry, wants to remind Knoxville that it hasn't been completely unused in recent years. The 1905 train station adjacent to World's Fair Park currently houses a few businesses that will have to relocate. And recently she's been successfully marketing it as a special-event venue. In fact, due to the impending school conversion, which is happening quicker than some expected, Greene will have to return more than $15,000 in deposits on 17 wedding parties she had already planned for this spring and summer. And 17 brides will have to come up with a Plan B, a few months before their big events. The grandly designed lobby was growing in popularity as a wedding-reception site.
Greene says she had been led to believe that any radical changes to the L&N would come with more warning.
"The Foundry is proud to announce that we are now booking parties for the beautifully restored L&N Station," goes the ad on her website. "This historic 1905 building is the perfect venue for wedding receptions and a wide variety of events, the L&N can accommodate up to 300 people." She adds that she's not sure the station, which boasts rooms more palatial than those in any local country club—never mind hotel—is the best place for a high school. "I hope they take care of it," she says.