Weekend events make downtown Knoxville parking scarce

Weekend events make downtown Knoxville parking scarce

Posted:
Knoxville Police will be on hand this weekend downtown to ensure visitors are safe during the downtown races. Knoxville Police will be on hand this weekend downtown to ensure visitors are safe during the downtown races.

By JESSA LEWIS
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - With two different races and the kickoff for the Dogwood Arts Festival in Knoxville this weekend, things will be hopping.

With that many people downtown, parking and safety could be an issue. Some people who headed downtown Friday night said parking was already an issue.

"It took us over 30 minutes. We have circled around Knoxville at least three times in the downtown area," said Julie Niles.

Police say it could be that way all weekend, and the best way to keep it from becoming a problem is to plan ahead.

KPD is stepping up the number of officers on duty.

"We have to have extra staffing. We've got officers working the marathon that are going to be out to make sure the runners are safe and the drivers understand we're out there to make sure everybody gets to the race and has a good time," said KPD Captain Don Jones.

Closed roads have made downtown difficult for some to navigate.

"A little bit of trouble with the road closures. We couldn't get into where we would normally park," said John McCord.

The road closures will change throughout the weekend as different events begin and end.

"Leave early, be patient," added Cpt. Jones, "because we're going to be sharing the roads with a lot of folks that are going to be in the marathons, or enjoying the festivities that are going on downtown with the Dogwood Arts Festival. It's going to be busy downtown."

Some people are following that advice, making sure to give themselves plenty of time.

"Saturday, I'm doing the Color Me Rad race first thing in the morning, so I don't really know where I'm going to park, because I know State St garage is a mess, and we're in the later block at like 9:45, and so I know there's not going to be any good parking around the Civic Auditorium," explained John Kennedy.

The Color Me Rad 5k is Saturday morning. It benefits East Tennessee Children's Hospital.

The Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon is Sunday.

For a list of road closures, click here.

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