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Knoxville Regional
Transportation Planning Organization

400 Main St, Suite 403
Knoxville, TN 37902

email: contact@planeasttn.org
phone: (865) 215-2500
fax: (865) 215-2068

Finding Maynardville: A PlanET Demonstration Project

Posted 07/30/2013

A rural community struggling with its identity has turned to its historic roots to define its vision for the future

The City of Maynardville and the Union County Chamber are on track to find Maynardville.

With grant assistance from Plan East Tennessee and planning by the East Tennessee Community Design Center (ETCDC), the city is visioning a historic downtown center combining retail businesses, housing, and professional offices.  The plan will not only focus on streetscapes, but will actively incorporate the rich legacy of Maynardville’s history and culture into the design work.

As one of many rural communities struggling to create a sense of identity, community leaders recognized that the future of the city is tied to its vision and the needs of the people who choose to call Maynardville home.

In 2011, business leaders, elected officials, long-time residents, and community activists began meeting with the goal of creating a vision that would both spur economic growth and maintain the unique characteristics favored by residents. Monthly meetings were held to begin developing a strategic plan, but financing the project proved to be difficult.

Fortunately, Plan East Tennessee was in the process of identifying demonstration projects within each of the counties composing their five-county regional study area. Based on the economic opportunities that main street development programs provide in rural communities, planning for a historic business district in Maynardville was the selected project in Union County.

In April 2013, a community meeting was held with ETCDC representatives David Watson and Leslie Fawaz. Their process focused on answering four key questions: What features of the existing downtown do you like? What are some of the features you don’t like? What would you like to see developed? What would you not like to see developed?  The consensus of the participants has helped craft a plan that the City of Maynardville can use in staging revitalization of the downtown area.

A draft plan will be available this fall.

To learn more about these organizations and how they are helping communities transform themselves into vibrant, resilient places that are embraced by the people who choose to call East Tennessee home, visit the PlanET and  Community Design Center websites.

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