Knoxville Neighborhood Advisory

Knoxville Neighborhood Advisory – Vol. 9, No. 2 – Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2016


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  1. Eastport / Lee Williams to Honor Police, Fire Fighters
  2. 2.  ONK Names Spencer Interim President
  3. To Apply for Grant Funding, You Must Attend a Workshop
  4. Networking Luncheon Will Connect City Neighborhoods
  5. Consider Donating Door Prize for Neighborhood Luncheon
  6. MPC to Ponder Senior Living Facility in South Knoxville
  7. Meeting This Thursday: Future of Civic Auditorium and Coliseum
  8. Apply for Free Weatherization
  9. Magnolia Avenue Streetscape Designs to be Unveiled Next Week
  10. BZA Decisions Can Impact Your Neighborhood
  11. Bring Police Concerns to PARC Next Week
  12. Neighborhood and Government Calendar


Published by the City of Knoxville’s Office of Neighborhoods to report news important to Knoxville’s residential neighborhoods. News & calendar deadline: 9 a.m. Tuesdays.


  1. Eastport / Lee Williams to Honor Police, Fire Fighters


“Who has never needed to call 911?”


Sylvia Cook, president to Eastport / Lee Williams Neighborhood Watch, posed this question to the members of her organization one day last year. When no hands were raised, she proceeded with, “And, didn’t they always come?” Everyone nodded.


“They never say, ‘Oh, so-and-so lives at that address so we just won’t go’, she continued. There was more nodding. “So don’t you think it is a good idea to show the folks who take care of us that we appreciate them?” All were in agreement. This started a tradition of honoring the police and fire fighters who serve the Eastport / Lee Williams community in East Knoxville.


Eastport / Lee Williams will devote its January meeting to celebrate the Knoxville police and fire departments. The group will meet at the Lee Williams Community Center at 12:00 noon on Wednesday, January 20. Homemade chili and cider will be served. All available emergency personnel are invited to attend.


For more, contact Sylvia Cook at or 206-3433.


  1. ONK Names Spencer Interim President


Old North Knoxville, Inc. has selected Donna Spencer to serve as interim president, succeeding the late Andie Ray, who passed away in December. Elections for new officers will be held later this quarter.


  1. To Apply for Grant Funding, You Must Attend a Workshop


City neighborhood organizations that wish to apply for funding under the Neighborhood Small Grants Program must send a representative to either one of two mandatory pre-application workshops scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Thursday, January 14, and 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, January 20, at the Cansler Family YMCA, 616 Jessamine Street.


Applications are due March 14, and awards will be announced in May for projects starting in July. The City is allocating up to $43,000 for the grants program this year.


Neighborhood groups can apply for grants ranging from $500 to $3,000. To enhance the impact of the city’s funding, grants must be matched with donations of goods and services, volunteer labor and other financial support for the project.


The grant guidelines and the application form are available on the city’s website.

Please note that many questions can be answered by reading the guidelines and looking over the application. Both the guidelines and application will be reviewed at the workshops.


Grant funds can be used for projects and programs developed by resident-led, resident-controlled neighborhood associations, tenant associations, homeowners associations, and neighborhood watch groups that serve neighborhoods inside city limits. Start-up neighborhood groups may also apply.


Questions? Call David Massey at 215-3232.


  1. Networking Luncheon Will Connect City Neighborhoods


In the cold of winter, those who loyally attend neighborhood meetings and invest their time in neighborhood improvement might understandably feel isolated and few in number.


In fact, hundreds of Knoxville citizens work tirelessly to strengthen their neighborhoods, either through their neighborhood organizations or in individual acts of neighborliness.


And all of them — all of you — will have a chance to meet and learn from one another at the City of Knoxville Neighborhood Awards and Networking Luncheon, which will be held Saturday, March 5, at the Knoxville Convention Center.


This is a heads up. Mark your calendars now. Registration will begin soon.


Doors will open at 10 a.m. for coffee and informal conversation with Mayor Madeline Rogero, city department heads, and neighborhood leaders from across the city. Information booths will offer a wealth of information on city services. A special program — more about this later — will take place from 11 a.m. until noon, followed by the awards luncheon.


Mayor Rogero will present the Diana Conn Good Neighbor of the Year Award and Neighborhood Achievement Awards. Nominations for the Good Neighbor award have now closed, but neighborhood organizations can still apply for an achievement award. (See this page or call David Massey at 215-3232.)


The event will close with drawings for door prizes beginning at 1:30 p.m. The “quirky” and popular local music group, the Old City Buskers, will provide the entertainment for the entire event.


This event will be useful to anyone interested in the health and vitality of Knoxville’s residential neighborhoods, especially members and leaders of Knoxville’s 120-plus neighborhood groups. The event will feature opportunities for sharing ideas and making cross-neighborhood connections.


  1. Consider Donating Door Prize for Neighborhood Luncheon


Neighborhood organizations, businesses and nonprofits are urged to consider donating a door prize for the 2016 Neighborhood Awards and Networking Luncheon on March 5 at the Knoxville Convention Center.


Donors will be recognized in this newsletter, on the Office of Neighborhoods website and at the luncheon itself.


Donations are needed by Friday, Feb. 12, but a commitment sooner would be greatly appreciated. Contact Rebecca McIver or 215-3456.


The following local businesses have already donated or committed to donating a prize for the luncheon: Bailey Fiber Art Studio, Billy Lush Board Shop, Bluetique, Bula, Central Flats & Taps, Happy Envelope, Good Golly Tamale, Knox Whisky Works, Lox Old City Salon, Pioneer House, SugarBuzz, Sweet P’s BBQ, Tennessee Theater and Visit Knoxville.


So far, the donated door prizes include gift certificates, gift baskets, printed posters, private tours, and even jewelry and Parisian macarons.


  1. MPC to Ponder Senior Living Facility in South Knoxville


The Metropolitan Planning Commission — meeting at 1:30 p.m. this Thursday, Jan. 14 — will consider whether to grant a use-on-review to transform the vacant and deteriorating Giffin School building, 1834 Beech Street, into a senior living facility.


Proposed by Giffin Senior Community Partners LLC, the facility would include nine independent living units, 50 assisted living units, adult day care and a clinic. The use-on-review would be subject to nine conditions. For details, see the MPC agenda at and click on agenda item 43.


Meanwhile, MPC staff is recommending that a proposal for a mixed use zone in the Bearden area be postponed until the March meeting “to ensure adequate time for public review and input.”


Other city items are on the January agenda. Neighborhood organizations are urged to keep up with the MPC agenda to watch out for rezonings and other changes that might impact their neighborhoods. To receive MPC notifications by email, visit and click on the email icon at the bottom of the home page.


  1. Meeting This Thursday: Future of Civic Auditorium and Coliseum


The City of Knoxville will hold a public meeting at the Civic Auditorium, 500 Howard Baker Jr. Ave., at 6 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 14, to discuss the recently completed feasibility study for the Knoxville Civic Auditorium and Coliseum (KCAC). Free parking will be provided in the Coliseum garage.


Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero and City staff will be joined by representatives of the consulting firm Conventions, Sports and Leisure International. The consultant’s study — which is available on the City’s website at — outlines three options and presents the pros and cons of each option. These are:


1) Retain existing KCAC with minimum upgrades – basically a “status quo maintenance.”


2) Major Renovation / redevelopment of KCAC (make major upgrades to the auditorium and build a new coliseum at that site)


3) Full Replacement (tear all down and build new — either at that site or elsewhere).


Cost estimates for various options within those alternatives range from $26 million to $279.5 million. The study also estimates the direct and indirect economic benefits of each of the scenarios.


“We look forward to a good discussion,” Mayor Rogero wrote in a recent email. “No decision has been made at this point, and it is important that the community hears the options, the costs, and the opportunities, and then shares their feedback with us.”


KCAC opened in 1961 and consists of the 6,540-seat Coliseum (4,790 seats for hockey or ice shows), the 2,500-seat Auditorium, a 4,800-square foot ballroom, 10,000 square feet of exhibit space and an outdoor plaza with a capacity of 10,000. There are 2,500 parking spaces among three connected/adjacent garages.


For anyone unable to attend the public meeting, comments can be submitted via email to


  1. Apply for Free Weatherization


If you have not yet applied to the Knoxville Extreme Energy Makeover weatherization program (KEEM) yet, now is your chance.


KEEM will be holding special after-hours application sessions on Saturday, Jan. 16, and Saturday, Jan. 23, from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. at CAC’s Housing and Energy Office, 2247 Western Ave. Before attending, visit to view program eligibility information or call the CAC at 244-3080.


KEEM is a two-year, TVA-funded program that will provide energy efficiency and weatherization retrofits to over 1,200 low- and moderate-income homes in Knoxville. Eligible homes will receive upgrades that increase in-home comfort and reduce electricity consumption by an estimated 25 percent.


The KEEM Team is led by the Knoxville-Knox County CAC in partnership with the City of Knoxville, Knoxville Utilities Board, and the Alliance to Save Energy. KEEM supports the Smarter Cities Partnership, a coalition of more than 20 community organizations seeking to improve the quality, comfort, and affordability of Knoxville homes through energy efficiency.


  1. Magnolia Avenue Streetscape Designs to be Unveiled Next Week


The City of Knoxville will present the design details for Magnolia Avenue streetscape improvements at a public meeting on Thursday, Jan. 21, from 5:30-7 p.m. at the John T. O’Connor Senior Center, 611 Winona St.


Staff from the city’s Office of Redevelopment and Engineering Department, along with design consultants from Barge, Waggoner, Sumner and Cannon, will present final designs for streetscape improvements to a six-block section of Magnolia Avenue between Jessamine Street and North Bertrand Street. Public comment will follow.


Proposed improvements include raised medians to replace the center left-turn lane; bike lanes; improved sidewalks; bus pull-offs; and streetscape amenities that include street lighting, benches and bike racks. Traffic signals will be upgraded, and pedestrian signals and crosswalks will be improved. Left-turn lanes will be provided at major intersections.


In addition, there will be a two-week public comment period following the Jan. 21 meeting. After Thursday, the proposed design can be viewed on the city website at or in person at the Redevelopment office, Room 655, City County Building, 400 Main Street, from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Comment cards will be available.


Ideas and comments also can be sent to Redevelopment Director Dawn Michelle Foster at


  1. BZA Decisions Can Impact Your Neighborhood


Fifteen properties are on the agenda for next week’s meeting of the Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA).


Established by city ordinance, BZA hears appeals of denials of building permits by the city’s Building Inspections Department. The board, consisting of five citizens appointed by the Mayor, meets at 4 p.m. on the third Thursday of each month in the Small Assembly Room of the City County Building.


BZA meets next Thursday, January 21. Addresses on the agenda include 2701 Spence Place, 322 Barrar Avenue, 2308 Forest Avenue, 1612 Elm Street, 2613 Adair Drive, 1132 N. Sixth Avenue, 220 Carrick Street, 2714 Chapman Highway, 205 W. Depot Avenue, 310 Ogden Street, 203 N. Seven Oaks Drive, 300 E. Depot Avenue, 4315 Kingston Pike, 151 E. Blount Avenue, and 708 Morgan Street.


Keep up with how the BZA might impact your neighborhood. Watch for the black and white signs indicating that there is a pending decision on a particular piece of property. Most signs are for Metropolitan Planning Commission issues — which are also important — but signs with the word “variance” are BZA items.


The BZA agenda is posted on the city website. Browse to and click on Board of Zoning Appeals. The agenda contains more detail on each variance request.


A neighborhood group that keeps track of BZA will call the Plans Review & Inspections Department at 215-3669 to request and study the paperwork on a particular appeal, decide whether to take a position on the appeal, and then attend the BZA meeting to voice the group’s support or objections. A group can also request a postponement to allow time to meet with the applicant.


Decisions of the BZA can be appealed within 15 days of the BZA decision to Knoxville City Council. Appeals of a City Council decision are made to Chancery Court within 60 days of a City Council decision related to BZA.

  1. Bring Police Concerns to PARC Next Week


The Police Advisory and Review Committee (PARC) is a civilian oversight committee that audits the discipline process and the policies and procedures of the Knoxville Police Department (KPD).


The purpose is to strengthen the relationship between the citizens of the City of Knoxville and the KPD; to assure timely, fair and objective review of citizen complaints while protecting the individual rights of police officers; and to make recommendations concerning citizen complaints to the Chief of Police and to the Mayor.


By making sure citizen concerns are addressed by an independent body, PARC aims to improve the relationship between members of KPD and the citizens they serve.


PARC meets quarterly, and its next meeting is at 6 p.m. Thursday, January 21, at New Friendship Baptist Church, 1933 Texas Avenue in Lonsdale. For more, contact Lisa Chambers at 215-3966 or visit


  1. 12.  Neighborhood and Government Calendar


Include your neighborhood-related event or meeting in this space. Call 215-4382.


Visit for a complete list of meetings of various city boards and commissions.


If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation in order to attend a City of Knoxville public meeting, please contact Stephanie Brewer Cook at or 215-2034 no less than 72 hours prior to the meeting you wish to attend. For an English interpreter, contact David Massey at 215-3232 or


Tuesday, January 12 through Monday, January 18

King Week 2016

Martin Luther King Commemorative Commission


Tuesday, January 12 — 5 p.m.

Public Forum

Proposed Plans Review and Permit Fees Increase

Small Assembly Room, CCB



Tuesday, January 12 — 5:30 p.m.

Public Meeting

City of Knoxville Community Development Department

Annual Action Plan Update for Use of Federal Funds in 2016-2017

O’Connor Senior Center, 611 Winona Street

Linda Rust,, 215-2120


Tuesday, January 12 — 6 p.m.

Brown Avenue Neighborhood Watch (Second Tuesdays)

Hoitt Ave. Baptist Church, 2121 Hoitt Ave.

Jimmy Ramsey, 637-0243


Wednesday, January 1310-11:30 a.m.

Food Policy Council

(Second Wednesdays but check website for confirmation)

Knox County Health Department, 140 Dameron Avenue;


Wednesday, January 13 — 11:30 a.m.

Community Forum (Second Wednesdays)

Bearden Branch Library, 100 Golf Club Road

Sue Mauer, 690-0269


Wednesday, January 134:30 p.m.

Neighborhood Advisory Council, City of Knoxville

(Second Wednesdays except December)

Cansler YMCA, 616 Jessamine St.

David Massey, 215-3232


Thursday, January 14 — 1:30 p.m.

Metropolitan Planning Commission (Second Thursdays)

Large Assembly Room, City County Building



Thursday, January 145:30 p.m.

Grants Workshop (first of two identical workshops)

Neighborhood Small Grants Program

Office of Neighborhoods

Cansler YMCA, 616 Jessamine Street

Debbie Sharp, 215-5382, or David Massey, 215-3232


Thursday, January 14 — 6 p.m.

Lonsdale Homes Resident Association (Second Thursdays)

Community Building, 1956 Goins Dr.

Phyllis Patrick, 323-7224


Thursday, January 14 — 6 p.m.

Public Meeting: Future of Knoxville Civic Auditorium and Coliseum

Presentation on Study Results and Public Discussion

Civic Auditorium, 500 Howard Baker Jr. Ave. (Free parking)


Thursday, January 146:30 p.m.

“Savings in the House” Workshop

Tips on how to reduce your KUB bill

Knoxville Area Transit Center, 301 E. Church Ave.

244-3080 or


Saturday, January 169 a.m.-1 p.m.

Apply for Energy Efficiency Upgrades to Your Home

CAC Housing and Energy, 2247 Western Avenue

Check your eligibility at 244-3080 or


Saturday, January 16 — 10 a.m.

South Haven Neighborhood Association (Third Saturdays)

Hillcrest United Methodist Church, 1615 Price Ave.

Linda Rust, 679-9924,


Monday, January 18

Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday

City Offices Closed


Monday, January 1810 a.m. and 11:45 a.m.

MLK Parade and Tribute Service

Parade starts at 10 a.m. from YWCA Phyllis Wheatley Center, 124 S. Cruze Street and runs to Greater Warner Tabernacle Church, 3800 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave, for the Tribute Service

Martin Luther King Commemorative Commission,


Monday, January 187 p.m.

Alice Bell Spring Hill Neighborhood Association

(Third Mondays except June, July, December)

All are welcome to attend.

New Harvest Park, 4775 New Harvest Lane

Ronnie Collins, 637-9630


Tuesday, January 195 p.m.

Knox Country Board of Education— Mid-month Work Session

(Usually held on the Monday before the regular meeting and

third Mondays, except holidays or holiday weeks.)

First Floor Board Room, Andrew Johnson Building, 912 South Gay St.

For agenda, work sessions, and other items:

Visit Click on “Board of Education.”


Tuesday, January 196 p.m.

Delrose Drive Neighborhood Watch

(Third Tuesdays in January, March, May, July, September and November)

Riverview Baptist Church, 3618 Delrose Dr.
Corina and John Buffalow, 523-0102


Tuesday, January 19 — 7 p.m.

Edgewood Park Neighborhood Association (Third Tuesdays, except December)

Larry Cox Senior Center, 3109 Ocoee Trail

Peter Pallesen, 200-8311,


Tuesday, January 197 p.m.

City Council (every other Tuesday)

Main Assembly Room, City County Building



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