Knoxville, Tennessee – Knox County Parks and Recreation is working hard to complete a number of small, but critical, projects – even as the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the staff to operate with a skeleton crew.
“We are committed to making county parks and greenways safe for our families,” Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs said. “There has never been a more critical need for outdoor exposure and exercise as now.”
Knox County Parks and Recreation Senior Director Paul White agreed.
“The Mayor has made parks and recreation a priority since taking office,” White said.
As it stands, the department will resurface the playgrounds at Gibbs Park and The Cove at Concord Park. The crews are also building a new pedestrian walking bridge along the Halls Greenway near the community park and working with the State to extend the overflow parking area at House Mountain, which is now closed until further notice.
The department will review its list of projects in hopes of doing more later in the year.
Since December, the department has:
- Replaced the 40-year-old fencing at John Tarleton Park and installed a new playground and surface
- Replaced the playground surface at Tank Strickland Park
- Rebuilt the entire Powell Greenway Boardwalk
- Painted and replaced the siding at the New Harvest Park Community Center
- Rebuilt a series of dugouts and score boxes at fields across the county
- Installed new batting cages at the SportsPark
- Placed fencing at Gibbs Park and Alcoa Way Park
- Built a new pedestrian bridge at Ijams Nature Center near Mead’s Quarry
- Hosted the biggest and longest-running Festival of Lights program since the event started
The county golf courses, tennis courts, parks and greenways are currently open, but the skateparks, sports fields, basketball courts, restrooms and playgrounds are closed in compliance with Executive Orders 22 & 23 from Governor Bill Lee.