Throughout the project, we’ll post questions and comments that have been submitted on comment cards collected at community meetings, sent via email or submitted via the website.

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Recode Suggestions

I looked over the draft, and have the following suggestions:

1. Define “Blank Wall” There are several great buildings with blank walls, that have designed texture and material patterns, etc., but no windows.
2. Define if an alley or highway (i.e. other than roadway) is a ROW. This has to do with the portion of the code that indicates if a façade is visible from a ROW, then ……
3. Define how far such a ROW view would be. Example, if I can view a building from a higher grade 5 blocks away, while I am in an alley, then is that “visible from ROW”?
4. In DK-H district, set a minimum first floor to second floor dimension. Traditional buildings ranged in 18’ to 20’ +/-
5. If a building is on a sloped street, then does the ground level regulations apply to the entire area of the sloped street, or only the very bottom portion of it?

I will review in more detail in the next few days and will share anything else that I can think of.

New Knoxville Zoning

Has there been any dialogue with Knox County officials about adopting a unified zoning ordinance? This would greatly simplify development document preparation within both Knoxville and Knox County and could still be administered separately as they are now. Also, has there been any talk of expanding the MPC to be a one-stop-shop for development submittals, with the particulars still farmed out to their respective county or city authorities? One of the things we have noticed as design professionals is that the Knox County ordinance generally does not 1) have enough districts, 2) is still written assuming a mostly rural county and 3) is just enough different from the city to be confusing. We have noticed that the City's ordinance 1) seems to assume 1950s and 1960s approaches to development in terms of parking, 2) has too many districts, 3) is not applied uniformly and 4) is not flexible enough to encourage the kind of mixed use and higher density development which would be more environmentally sustainable. Thanks!

Sw-1

Concern is that SW-1 is not listed under the general list of residential. SW-1 is residential (low density). Should It fall under or with the EN, RN, list?

Noise

I respectfully disagree that existing noise ordinances are sufficient to address the needs of mixed use development, and I strongly believe that you must include certain noise issues as part of your conversation.

I am writing to you after contacting at least 20 others, from codes enforcement to the police department to the mayor’s office to every city council candidate. The noise ordinances as they are written have an exemption for HVAC units. The Tennessee Theater runs theirs at all hours of the day and night at a volume that is twice as loud as a construction site with heavy machinery running (I have video with decibel readings to show this.) The volume is at a threshold identified in federal standards as causing hearing damage, and yet it is allowed to run at any time of day for any amount of time. This would not be allowed in New York City or in other places I checked.

I needed to get a hearing test due to tinnitus and headaches caused by this noise, and the only way to sleep is to use earplugs and a sound machine at the same time (plus a vibrating alarm clock so I don’t oversleep.) After a few days of earplugs, my ear canals will be raw and near-bleeding. I have invested $3k on sound blocking shutters and will still have to invest another $15k in acoustic retrofitting with no guarantees. I have impact statements from numerous neighbors regarding their own stress levels/health, their inability to use expensive balcony retrofits ordered at purchase, and their need to make expensive architectural changes to their windows.

I’ve lived in urban environments for over 20 years, including large cities. I have many nice things to saying about moving to Knoxville, but I cannot recommend living downtown when people ask because of a general failure to control noise and light pollution here. Knoxville needs to take these seriously in mixed use development if it wants to be successful. My neighbors and I would be happy to discuss these issues with you, and other challenges that have arisen in our building, which is part residential and part commercial.

I realize my email is quite long, and I appreciate your time in reading it.

Noise?

Is there anything in the new planning regarding noise in residential districts? I don't believe current ordinances are adequate.
Staff Reply:
It is typically not within the purview of zoning ordinances to address noise, as this issue is usually handled through a separate noise ordinance. This is the case in Knoxville and you may want to contact City staff and your City Council member to advocate for enhancements to the City's noise ordinance. The draft zoning ordinance does propose a requirement for a landscape buffer between non-residential and residential development, which may help mitigate the impact of noise.

Mixed Use Development In C-h Highway Commercial Zoning District

Hi,

I have a question related to the C-H Highway Commercial Zones.

As currently drafted, would a mixed-use development with residential multifamily above a commercial ground floor be permitted in a C-H zone? I see in the Use Matrix that "Dwelling - Above the Ground Floor" is permitted in a C-H zone, but I don't understand whether that implies, multifamily, single family, etc.

Thanks for the help!
Staff Reply:
The intent is to permit either a single dwelling or multiple dwellings on the upper floor(s) of a building in the C-H zone. We will clarify this so there is no confusion.

Drive-through Facility

Consider allowing Drive-Through Facilities in C-N as a Permitted (P) or at least Special (S) use. Given that restaurants, financial institutions, and personal service establishments (I'm thinking of dry cleaners) are allowed in C-N there will certainly be instances when a drive through could make sense.

Comments - Draft Zoning Code

I am a commercial / industrial real estate broker. Below are my comments on the DRAFT Code.

PAGE 1-3

Pending Application
Can you remove the words "was deemed complete by the City". There is a significant investment of time and due diligence made on a property before an application.

Page 5-4; Table 5-2

Commercial Site Design requires all surface parking to be on side or rear unless in CH2 or CR2. Front door parking is a highly desirable feature for most commercial properties. Front door parking should be allowed in C G.

Table 9-1 Use Matrix
For the sake of completeness please add . . .
-Add "Heavy Retail, Rental, and Service"
-Add "Concrete Batch Plant"
-Add "Cement Plant" which is quite different from the Concrete Batch Plant above
-Add "Call Center"
-Add "Truck Stop and Refueling Facility"
-Add "Truck Terminal"
-Add "Construction Office with Outside Storage"
-Add "Landscaper and Lawn Mowing Office with outside Storage"

Page 10-1
Please add to Site Development Standards requirements for eighteen wheel vehicles and semi trucks in regards to building access and turnarounds.
Please add requirements for loading docks
Please add requirements for drive in doors

Concern Over Impact To Residential Housing Values...

I live in Sequoyah Hills. There are currently large commercial developments occurring on the north side of Kingston Pike, which I'm fine with. I think they are doing a good job of providing more affordable housing in the area and creating attractive (physically and financially) symbiotic venues for commercial activity. However, there are rumors of a land grab in the works for the south side of Kingston Pike, west of the intersection with Noelton Dr. If these residential areas are zoned for commercial or multi-family housing, I fear (with good reason) the housing values of all the homes in Sequoyah Hills will take a large hit (10% - 30% based on some bank of the envelope calculations). I would strongly oppose any Knoxville politician/administrator that would approve these areas for anything other than single family dwellings.

Sidewalks - School Zones

Thank you for allowing us to actively participate in offering comments and feedback. I live in Fountain City. We are .50 miles from Fountain City Elementary and Gresham Middle School on Grove Drive, which means that we are in what is called "parent responsiblity zone". Our daughter would like very much to walk to school, however the sidewalks stop less than halfway to our home from the schools. The road is narrow with a ditches and many use it as a cutthrough from Rifle Range to Broadway. People drive fast through the stretch were we live and it is dangerous to walk. We walk as a family and it is not a comfortable walk until we get to a sidewalk. There are children living in Grove Park Subdivision who would benefit from a sidewalk as well.

Please consider ensuring there are sidewalks within the parent responsibility zones throughout the city. This would be a blessing for those of us who have students as well as the general community who enjoy walking without fear of launching into a ditch to avoid the oncoming traffic.

Reflecting Roofs

Increasing the Reflectivity of Structures Could Reduce High Temperatures in Cities

I've been wondering whether it is feasible to include within the zoning codes requirements for reflective roofs. It certainly would help with urban heat island effects. See below.

Recent research has shown that cities, which absorb drastically more solar radiation than the countryside, would benefit from coloring dark surfaces with light gray or white materials. For instance, black asphalt reflects only four percent of the sunlight that strikes it, while grassland and white snow can reflect up to 25 and 90 percent, respectively. In New York City, this "urban heat island" effect can increase temperatures 1-3 degrees Celsius warmer relative to rural areas. Research by the National Center for Atmospheric Research found that by raising the reflectivity of a city's roofs from 32 percent to 90 percent, the urban heat island effect would decrease by a third, reducing maximum daytime temperatures by an average of 0.6 degrees C. Additional studies have found that "cool roofs" could reduce temperatures by 1.8 degrees C in other cities. Urban heat islands can also cause nighttime temperatures to remain high, placing stress on vulnerable populations in need of a recovery period from blistering daytime conditions.

For more information see
Yale Environment 360
https://e360.yale.edu/features/urban-heat-can-white-roofs-help-cool-the-worlds-warming-cities

Noise/dogs/drunken Parties

There seems to be a popular trend to getting dogs and locking them up either in the house for longs hours or in a fenced yard with no care, exercise, or training. Who do I call when I am surrounded by barking dogs almost non-stop while folks are away and many times home leaving them unattended? I have two on one side, one on the other and four behind me-these are put out around 5:30AM and bark for sometime till they calm down and start up again anytime I am in my own back yard garden trying to work or enjoy it. While one set of neighbors has owned and adapted to stop theirs the other two won't respond to pleas or any amount of talking.

And the one with one dog also has drunken parties on the screened in porch right outside my bedroom window along with dog running back and forth underneath it.

Help!

I have lived downtown all my adult life and until now everyone understood how to get along and be considerate of close living with neighbors. I do not know who to call and how to get anything done about this.Animal control came and they just lied and begged off and nothing changed.

My quality of life as well as lack of sleep has lead me to almost sell and leave many times but who would buy a house when they come to look at it and hear all this noise!?

Mixed Use (living Above The Store)

Support residential over businesses for live-work or condo ownership, in downtown as well as surrounding areas such as Broadway and Central Avenue, especially including areas around Happy Holler.

Reduce parking requirements in areas well-served by public transit and with bike lanes. Reduce the need for surface parking lots by supporting shared parking areas.

Input And Suggestion For Recode Knoxville

In recent years the continued growth in Knoxville has reduced the distances between commercial and residential areas. This has resulted in unreasonably loud, unusual and unnecessary noise from refuse collection (from dumpsters) in commercial areas that impact residential areas. The attached proposed change seeks to limit this refuse collection to times that will minimize significant impact to families and children while allowing collection in more commercial areas.

If you would have questions about this proposed change or need examples of where and how this will improve the quality of life in Knoxville please contact me.

Proposed Change to Knoxville Tennessee Code of Ordinances
Staff Reply:
The update of the City of Knoxville zoning ordinance will not include revisions to the City's noise ordinance as that is freestanding ordinance. The update to the City zoning code will propose landscape buffers between residential and non-residential development. The proposed landscape buffers will aid in addressing the issue with noise generated by abutting commercial uses.

Progressive Ideals And Recommendations For Recode Knoxville

Mr. Green,
On behalf of the Knox County Democratic Party Progressive Action Committee, we would like to submit the attached comments on ReCode Knoxville.
Please let us know if you or your team members have any questions on our submission.
Thank you,
Progressive Action Committee
Knox County Democratic Party

Progressive Ideals and Recommendations for ReCode Knoxville

? Regarding Zoning Ordinance Update

Will the update include any new sections using form based code?
Staff Reply:
Draft 1 incorporates the existing the form cords for South Waterfront and Cumberland Avenue, but does not propose additional form districts.

Yard Definitions

I seem to remember a graphic that was used in one of the presentations I saw that showed how the city defines the space in a residential yard. The graphic showed the front and back yard as well as side and standoffs etc. I can't seem to find that graphic now. If it is no trouble and you can find it easily, could you send that to me.

Is that going to change in the recode? If so what will the new definitions be?

Chicken Coops

What is going to happen with chicken coop rules. Has anything been decided?
Staff Reply:
The staff recommendation at this time is to leave the standards for chicken coops as they are now. Please let us know if you fell the standards should be revised in any way.

Zoning Lots

Can you clariify: Does a zoning lot only include connecting lots that are within the same zone? Will this apply to commercial and office zones also, not just residential?

Furthermore, the section addressing zoning lots, you mention that the City has an original ward map and a parcel map. Can you clarify what that means?

Racial Equity

Hello,

I'm concerned about how Black and Latinx stakeholders are engaged in this process. Is engagement equitable at this point? Also, I hope there is some serious social impact consulting seriously measuring along lines of difference pertaining to race, income, ability, etc. Transportation often widens inequity so I expect that to be a topic of public discussion and addressed in the plan as well. Thus far, I see buzz words about being green but nothing about social impact and explicitly measuring perhaps unintended negative consequences to what we're doing here.

Thank you for your consideration,

C-3

One concern I have coming out of the recent presentation is the recommendation for keep the general commercial code for both suburban and urban development. I am not exactly sure how to do it, but I think we need an urban commercial code for places like Central, potentially MLK, Sevier, Sutherland, parts of Kingston Pike and Broadway, which would be significantly different than the traditional C3 suburban code. I would appreciate your thoughts.

This article highlights the problem.
http://insideofknoxville.com/2017/09/a-plea-for-preservation-of-a-building-and-a-struggle-for-the-soul-of-central/

An historic overlay probably would not be appropriate for Central, but we need some type of guidelines to keep it developing in an urban style, rather than suburban. How can a one size fits all approach work?

Marshall Stair
Council Member
I am an urban farmer in East Knoxville

URBANAG: The current permit is $100 for a farmstand for a 9-month season. We have food access issues in Knoxville, and in order to make food more accessible ? lay farmers/backyard farmers should be able to set up a stand to sell for free. Wave a profit requirement ? if you gross> $500(?) you have to pay, but let hobby farmers provide food to their neighbors. Consider incentives for food production in urban neighborhoods. Not just community gardens, but market gardens. Consider property tax breaks for people growing food in the city, similar to how rural areas have agricultural designations. Particularly on empty lots that are purchased from the city.

H1 (historic overly and design guide) My neighborhood is in this process of approval by MPC/City Council. Should the process be suspended until this Recode is complete? They seem very duplicative. We are spending great amounts of time, money, & energy resources to create/debate something that may be changed significantly. I have a lot of questions about the AG special purpose district! ?Farmland? is now inside residential areas in urban settings!
Shouldn?t use categories be separated by impact not type: retail establishment & convenience store (with gas) has a very diff visual & traffic impact than book stores.

PUD ? consider formal approval of concept plan so developer has some certainty before committing $ to prelim plan.

Very glad code is being reworked. It?s impossible to figure out! Re-subdivided lots vs tax parcels. See past Planning magazine article.
The presentation demonstrates a strong move in the right direction. Thank you for your time. I will be keeping up to date with further updates and I look forward to the change. If I think of any ideas or if I see any potential issues, then I will contact your organization and let you know. Thanks again!
Thank you for working to make the zoning & code easier to understand. The presentation was very helpful & clear. Good work! I am particularly interested in protecting residential areas from industrial buildings (maybe with more than just buffer green spaces) & revising buildings. I hope the new zoning code can help with fragmentation in the cityl. I am also concerned with what it would look like if the community wanted to fight a PUD. How easy would that be? I hope easy. Thank you!
I think these changes will make everything easier and more clear. I wish I had some constructive criticism, but everything looks great.

Community Project Maintenance Funding

RE: 6th street underpass mural project

Apparently, although the original grant attempts to incorporate maintenance/cleaning...there are also appear to be restrictions as to water runoff which effectively prevents maintenance. I would propose that "blight projects" or other art/murals/etc. specifically address annual/ongoing cleaning and maintenance. The underpass is getting dirtier by the day and some are now becoming bolder with their "camping-out" scenarios.

Solar Power

Recode Knoxville Since your favorite word is "sustainability," how about you implement the total opposite of what FPL is doing in Florida with Solar. FPL is not allowing homeowners to own their own solar power. Homeowners have to connect it to FPL. This is a bunch of hog wash. You nor anyone else owns the power of sun. Since the City of Knoxville and KUB are really the same org. You have the power to do this. I'll see what you guys have come up with at your next public meeting.

South Knoxville Sidewalk

Are their any plans to put sidewalk/bike path on Sevier Ave? There is a huge need from SoKno Taco corner up to Red Bud crossing. People frequently walk this area and it is very difficult to see them at night...with no shoulder. I get frustrated at lack of services for an area that the home owners pay city and county taxes, but we get forgotten or left out of improvements. Thanks!

Survey

I am just now finding out about recode Knoxville. I saw it on my kub bill. Why did they not send out letters to every postal address about this subject and the survey? I am watching the video of the stakeholder advisory committee and hearing them say they sent out e-mails and posted it on there web site.They said they wanted better response from people. How many peoples e-mails do you have and how do you expect to get them? How many people are going to know about your web site? What about people that don't have internet? So again I ask,Why did they not send out letters to every postal address about this subject and the survey? Or did they and I missed it? Thank You for your time.

Bikes

So as a cyclist in Knoxville I notice that it's very unfriendly mainly due to there is nowhere to park a bicycle at basically any business. If they do the bicycle racks are in horrible places like the bicycle racks at Walgreens in Bearden where it's literally 10 feet from Kingston pike. Either that or I have to literally walk my bicycle into the store and leave it somewhere at the front while I shop or walk it with me.

I would love to see a building code that required a bike rack up against the building for Knoxville.

Walgreens bicycle parking http://imgur.com/1HBcaBs

Sidewalks

I would like to see a sidewalk from the Rocky Hill shopping center to Rocky Hill School. There is so much school traffic on that road and the road is not very wide. I think a sidewalk would be very helpful and make the road a lot safer.

Street Trees

I walk anywhere I can from my house in Old North, and I often have my kids with me in a stroller. Lately I've noticed a lot of urban development and repurposing of defunct businesses, which I applaud. Efforts like this make the city more livable and enjoyable. I've also noticed that in many projects (such as the construction on Depot at the Regas site), huge mature street trees that I came to appreciate and love for their shade have been cut down. I think incentives to work around existing trees are a great idea, as it will easily take 50-100 years to replace a tree that may have been in the way for a short-term project. Seeing a long, hot sunny stretch where there were once spreading old limbs is discouraging. And sweaty. Trees also lend an established, well-cared for feeling to cities, and we lose a lot when we lose mature trees. Thank you for your time.

Walkability/public Transit And Mixed Use

It is extremely important to my sense of wellbeing as a Knoxville resident that we emphasize different modes of transport, including facilities for pedestrian, bicycle, scooters, busses and potentially other public transport.i fully support the COKs sidewalk investments and moves towards mixed use neighborhoods.

Sidewalks

My son will be starting Kindergarten this year. I love being active and it makes me sad that I live so close to the school, but I can't walk because there are no sidewalks! The area is growing and there is not a lot of parking. If there were sidewalks throughout the community I think there would be a lot more people walking and biking and leaving their cars at home. Thanks for your time!

Sidewalks

The sidewalks in Fort Sanders, especially on Clinch and Laurel are cracked and crumbling. Cars are parked at yellow curbs, bus stops on Clinch.

More Info After Taking Survey

I got this email after taking a survey about zoning. I wanted to comment that I live near kingston pike and moved to my neighborhood because there was a bus stop nearby. However, about 6 months after moving into my house, the bus route changed. I now have to walk a little farther to catch the bus, but that's not really the issue. The big issue here is that I live in a residential area very close to businesses on kingston pike, one of Knoxville's busiest roads, that I cannot get to safely because there are no sidewalks. There are some areas that barely even have shoulder to walk in. I have to walk though someone's yard to get to Kingston pike because someone's house along kingston pike has so much foliage on the ground that you have to walk IN kingston pike around the foliage. It is very unsafe and discouraging.

I do not drive, and I think it isn't good to require people to drive in this city. It creates more traffic and accidents because people who should not be driving are, because there are no other options. It is not fair to those who cannot afford cars or those unable to drive.

I walk to my dentist appointments on S Peters Rd., just a 20 minute walk from my house, but it's a little nerve wracking because there are many spots where I barely have any space to walk safely.

More sidewalks make the city safer and healthier. I have lost weight by exercising and walking more. I think it's kind of sad that many people have to first drive to greenways to walk. There is a greenway near where I live, but I cannot get there safely due to lack of sidewalks and pedestrian crossings. I have biked there, but being near an interstate ramp also makes me nervous when I try. Is also like to be able to bike to the greenway safely.

I can understand not having sidewalks in residential areas, but it is necessary in mixed residential and business areas to connect the two safely with sidewalks.

Fortunately I work downtown and I'm very happy that there's plenty of sidewalk there.

Sorry if this was long, but I wanted to voice my opinion and frustrations. I hope there are others like me wanting safer ways to walk in the city. Thanks for reading.

Official Questions For The Boards And Committees For Recode Knoxville

Official questions for the boards and committees for Recode Knoxville

1. What kind of Input, consulting, training, email or other documents, regarding RecodeKnoxville (rezoning), are coming from the ICLEI global network?

2. How will you prevent mis-identification of wetlands?

3. Have you looked to New York where there is high density living, but no affordable housing?

4. Which outside entities may possibly provide credits, tax breaks or any funding to the city and its citizens for following the new code.

5. Does the city of Knoxville get any credits or any type of funding for creating high density living?

6. Does the city of Knoxville get any credits or any type of funding for creating high density living for lower income levels.

7. Will Knoxville have complete control over building or will any outside entities (government or NGO's outside of Knoxville) have a say?

8.? What is the current percentage of open space in Knoxville?

9.? Will the City of Knoxville have to meet the requirements of a sustainable community??

10.? Does the city of Knoxville have to meet any rezoning codes for any reason?

Residential House Freedom

I strongly believe house owners should be able to use their houses as they see fit. It is not government's business to regulate who lives in your house. I think ordinances restricting occupancy would prove unconstitutional if challenged. I also think short term rental such as Air B&B should not be restricted.

Zoning: Commercial Corridors & Building Height

Regarding the Commercial Corridors question: single family housing should not be encouraged in the corridor but commercial with residential above is a great way to keep neighborhoods safe and convenient for multifamily dwellings.

Regarding height increases: 45' does seem a bit low but I would not want to see the heights increased by very much - the human scale is very important to maintain when attempting to encourage pedestrian friendliness (which is a form of equal opportunity design).

Additional Comments

Thank you for providing a space for additional comments. I strongly encourage more sidewalks, especially in the gap areas where sidewalks appear for a distance, then stop, or there is a gap between existing sidewalks. I'm sure others may have a similar situation, but my neighborhood is located within a short distance to the a) sidewalk on Francis Rd in one direction, and b) in the other direction, the sidewalk on Middlebrook Pike. However, I am trapped because the roads to get to those sidewalks are extremely curvy and narrow, and are hazardous for cars at times, much less a pedestrian or cyclist. If only the gap were filled, the residents in my area could travel by sidewalk in one direction to Cedar Bluff and beyond, and in the other direction, utilizing sidewalks and greenways, all the way to Volunteer Landing and beyond. The possibilities really excite me, except for the gap which completely changes the picture. Also, the closest bus stop is at Amherst/Middlebrook or Francis/Middlbrook and I have seen walkers risk their lives walking on the road until they reached a sidewalk leading to the bus stop.

I know there are many priorities, thank for allowing me to voice my opinions. Thank you also for looking to the future and helping to make Knoxville an even more wonderful city.

Sustainability Incentives

I'm not sure if this fits in the purview of the zoning work you're doing...but I'd love to see the city offer incentives/take actions to encourage adoption of more sustainable behaviors. I'm thinking:

- Make the 20 best parking spots in all city-owned garages EV only parking spots
- Create a PACE financing program
- Work with KUB to implement an excellent net metering program with highly favorable rates for Knoxvillians who add solar to their roofs over a designated period of time. In other words, if I add solar to my roof between now and, say, the end of 2021, KUB buys my excess power production or production at peak demand times for $.20/KwH.

And then some personal peeves/requests:
- Somehow make it so I could actually walk easily from Sequoyah to shopping centers on Kingston Pike without feeling like I'm putting my life at risk! Getting from the Sequoyah side of the street to the opposite side of Kingston Pike is really a hair raising experience. And then walking on the sidewalk beside Kingston Pike always makes me feel like I could get plowed over by a driver at any minute (no barrier between the traffic and me).
- Find a way to encourage/incentivize homeowners to turn OFF their programmed lawn sprinklers/irrigation systems when it's raining!
- Bring back curb-side glass recycling
- Find a way to encourage/incentivize composting

Comments

Develop code that is more than "minimal"- let code reflect tougher standards so that variances are more difficult to ask for and have approved

Also, don't make all neighborhoods alike- as in the survey- there are distinct areas that need to be cherished and preserved.

Great ideas about landscaping- but after the initial build- who checks to make sure the landscaping is still in tact and being taken care of.

Owners of apartment buildings should have specific requirements that must be adhered to- so neighborhoods don't have to complain and complain in order for things to change- for example- apartments on Jacksboro near Kesterwood, Oak Park, and Woodrush. An eyesore like that devalues the beautiful homes in the area.

Inskip

We do not need anymore apartments / condos in Inskip. We need more traffic calming and more police presence.

Questions

it is difficult to answer some questions because, like many things, it's a matter of degree. the devil is in the details.

for instance, do i favor design controls? it depends on the degree. i certainly favor some, as long as they establish guidelines and allow flexibility, but i do not favor controls if they specifically tell me that i have to plant an oak tree, for instance, or i have to use red brick.

it's okay, in my opinion, to say you must have so many trees, that they be native species, and a min. size, but it is not all right to tell me i have to plant a white oak and nothing but a white oak.

anyway, i took a chance and said 'yes', but others with the same feelings might just as easily say 'no'.

Use Of Existing Trees As Credit Toward Landscaping

I wish to amend my previous statement.

This credit should be allowed only for tree species that are native to Knox County or non-natives specimens that have an established history of use over many decades without any demonstration of colonization, reproduction or invasive tendencies. Non-natives should only be allowed when passing this very high hurdle. An example of a tree that should be allowed for the credit would be a bald cypress, a weeping willow, or a white cedar. Examples of non-natives that should not be allowed are any of the non-native mulberries, princess tree, and those terrible little European hornbeams that are popping up everywhere (they are showing invasive tendencies!!).

Knoxville should get its house together in regard to being a "real" tree city and start focusing on native species of trees, flowers and grasses, reclaiming roadsides and small woodlot spaces to promote pollinator and wildlife habitat. We have serious invasives problems and need to get real about it. In 40 years, the precious "urban wilderness" is going to be a deadscape of non-native vines and shrubs. Your forest is dying all around you and you don't notice, because everything is green. Deal with the kudzu patches, the wintercreeper, the privet and bush honeysuckle, the English ivy, etc, etc., or watch your forests die.

Use Of Existing Trees As Credit Toward Landscaping Requirements

This allowance should only be for species native to Knox County.

Transportatuon

There's no public transportation past Cedar Bluff and it's difficult if you live out there and have a job in town. I would love to see it expanded and/or a commuter system for high volumn times from West and North to downtown.

Side Walks And No Ditches

Would like sidewalks in neighborhoods other than downtown to promote security and community. Also, get rid of the ditches that line almost all of the streets in south Knoxville. Either that or annex us so we don't have to pay taxes to pay for the rest of the city's sidewalks and proper water management (no more ditches dug in people's front yards). Put it in the code to require city neighborhoods to have sidewalks.

Ensuring Affordability

Knoxville is a scruffy city, and part of what's kept it that way are the many locally-born, grown, and owned businesses. An updated zoning code will spur increased development in Knoxville and, inevitably, will raise rent and property prices. The new code should set standards for ensuring that a reasonable percent of rents and properties remain affordable for the small-scale folks who've made this city unique. I grew up around Greenville, SC and watched as it transformed into the tourist destination it is today. However, one of the biggest complaints about Greenville from locals and tourists alike is that it is too "corporate." Unless we plan ahead to keep rents and properties affordable, both for retail and for housing, Knoxville will make the same mistake. Let's keep it scruffy, even while we work to make it a livelier place for all of us to live.

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