Nov 16 2012
02:32 pm

The Ijams Nature Center today released a statement opposing the James White Parkway Extension and supporting the No Build option along with improvements to the Moody Ave. connections. Full text of the statement after the jump...

Ijams Opposes the Proposed Extension of the James White Parkway
South Knoxville Organizations Champion Alternatives

Ijams Nature Center's mission is to encourage stewardship of the natural world, and preserving the integrity of Knoxville's Urban Wilderness is critical to furthering Ijams' mission.

Ijams has worked closely with Legacy Parks Foundation and the Appalachian Mountain Bike Club for several years to create greater outdoor opportunities for the community. Ijams now connects City parks, including Marie Meyers Park and William Hastie Natural Area. New trail connections also provide new opportunities for residents in the South Haven and Southside/Sevierville Pike neighborhoods to directly access parks on foot or on bike.

South Knoxville has changed dramatically since the James White Parkway Extension Project commenced in 1977. Preservation of the sector's richest natural assets is now recognized and supported by community members and local government as vital to the area's quality of life and economic growth. To this end, Ijams Nature Center opposes TDOT's proposed extension of the James White Parkway.

Ijams Nature Center supports the NO BUILD option, seeing the natural termination of the roadway as it exists today. However, Ijams' support of the NO BUILD option is made with the belief that necessary improvements be made to the connection of James White Parkway along Moody Avenue and other connecting roadways in the area. These improvements include a complete streets approach, pursuant to the MPC Chapman Highway Corridor Study that improves access to South Knoxville and Knox County for all (vehicles, bicycles, walkers, runners, the disabled, etc.).

Further to TDOT's recently released environmental impact statement on the James White Parkway Extension, a public hearing on this issue has been set for Thursday, December 6 at 5:00 p.m. at South Doyle Middle School. Ijams Nature Center encourages interested parties to attend.

bizgrrl's picture

Wonderful. Wonder what it


Wonder what it takes to stop a road such as this. The Knoxville bypass was discontinued/stopped, remember the orange route. Who's lack of interest stops such a project?

fischbobber's picture

A good start

I think the Ijams statement is a good start. A huge part of the issue is that (as a west Knoxvilleian) my journeys to south Knoxville do not tend to be often or concentrated enough to form an intelligent opinion on the issue. Statements by the mayor and Ijams (as well as map study and sought out opinions on land use and what lies in Knoxville's as a whole as well as south Knoxville's best interest) have lead to my decided opinion that the Ijams solution is the best for all concerned, but getting that word out would be the function of media outlets, government officials and P.R. firms. Aside from being the right thing to do, it's a position that could be spun from any angle.

The relatively small number of people that deal with the area on a regular basis likely have an opinion so whoever tries to sell a solution would be well advised to remember that they are selling to the largely ignorant. That can be a good thing, or a bad thing.

michael kaplan's picture

Does pedestrian and bicycle

Does pedestrian and bicycle movement come under TDOT's purview?

R. Neal's picture



jmcnair's picture



Gail--Grew up in South Knox's picture

Promoting 'Park and Ride' South Knoxville & beyond

Hello there,
I grew up in South Knoxville decades ago, and watched the increasing use of Chapman Hwy by commuters and visitors from Sevier and other counties, (and vice versa, many coimng from Knoxville and heading out to Sevier County for their reasons).

I highly recommend and promote the use of DOT funds to promote and develop PARK AND RIDE facilities throughout South Knoxville and surrounding counties, in order to lessen vehicular traffic on Chapman Hwy and other routes coming into Knoxville from the southerly direction.

There are already many parking lots which could be utilized for Weekday Park and Ride locations. MANY churches along the route have large parking lots, Many businesses have large parking lots. We can utilize areas are already paved for parking lots, instead of paving over any more of Nature to create communter parking lots. THE POSSIBILITIES ARE MANY! Greenways could also connect to the Commuter Parking lots, so that others could use Park and RIde buses to come into town.

LET's celebrate these types of possibilities and spread the word far and wide to create Park and Ride facilities in South Knoxville and the neighboring counties.

MAY we find the most beneficial ways of helping everyone and maintaining the integrity of neighborhoods and Nature.

Here are a few comments concerning the Robocall poll:

grew up in South Knox's comment:
What about Park & Ride MASS TRANSIT Out CHAPMAN HWY...
Submitted by grew up in South Knox (not verified) on Wed, 2012/11/21 - 1:17pm.

...for the commuters/visitors from outlying neighborhoods and other counties?

Let these folks become more innovative with Transportation DOLLARS.

Let the out of county commuters/visitors from Sevier and other counties create their own Park and Ride/businesses in their own counties so that they can commute to downtown Knoxville or wherever they desire to go?!?

THis idea would save commuters money and time. They could spend time on a Park and Ride bus resting, relaxing, computing, and saving wear and tear on their own vehicles.

I lived in the metro Denver/Boulder Colorado area in the 80's and 90's. They have developed a wonderful mass transit for Park and Ride commuter/visitors. I could catch a regular bus in my neighborhood in east Denver to downtown Denver. Then, transfer to a commuter bus to go visit friends and shop in Boulder. I SAVED SO MUCH MONEY and could relax. The entire trip only cost $2.00 one way.

WHy do some folks think it is necessary to destroy other people's neighborhoods, in an area where they only drive through, in order to make their lives faster by three minutes?!?

LET THEM SPEND THEIR MONEY to create car pools and buses for Park and Rides. THey don't even stop to shop on Chapman Hwy unless it's out near John Sevier Hwy and the big box chains.

AND the world is going to be different in a very short time, after PEAK OIL, during and after the energy descent.

We are finding ways to be more productive whilst leaving neighborhoods intact. We are becoming more innovative and creative.

WE ARE the ones we've been waiting for. Let's create and maintain a GREAT PARK AND RIDE system out Chapman Highway! Let there be a Park and Ride station out near John Sevier Hwy and Chapman Hwy And others along Alcoa Hwy and other main thoroughfares.

Stan G's picture
On a Somewhat Related Note
Submitted by Stan G on Wed, 2012/11/21 - 1:18pm.

I am pleasantly surprised to see Google updated its map to include the South Knoxville Wilderness Trails. May have to do a little hiking tomorrow.


Treehouse's picture
Submitted by Treehouse on Wed, 2012/11/21 - 2:02pm.

Thank you, thank you, for the Park and Ride promotion. All of Knox County and the surrounding counties could use this but it would be particularly helpful for South Knoxville and South Knox County. It could even help get folks to and from Pigeon Forge without so much danger in driving on Chapman Highway. We need Park and Rides all over!

Gail--Grew up in South Knox's picture

New Businesses flourish with the Park and Rides

One more thing:

Just think of the jobs created and maintained with the creation of Park and Rides. This could even help with tourism between counties. Infinite possibilities.

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