KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Another subdivision could be one step closer to coming to Corryton, following a vote by the Knoxville/Knox County Planning Commission to rezone 23 acres off East Emory Road. The move, which still requires approval by county commissioners, paves the way for a developer to buy the property near the intersection with Tazewell Pike, and build up to nine dwelling units per acre.
Cattle farmer Adam Thompson spoke at the meeting Thursday to share his opposition to rezoning the land, which is currently zoned for agricultural use.
“I do feel like slowly we are losing that rural feel,” he said.
Attorney Benjamin Mullins argues the land is included in the approved 2015 Northeast Sector County plan as a spot that should include medium-density housing. He also pointed to recent infrastructure improvements in the area, including a new middle school, and traffic upgrades.
While Thompson acknowledged the recent improvements, he also noted several subdivisions are currently under construction.
“People haven’t moved into them yet,” Thompson said. “Those families aren’t established yet, so we don’t know what the implications are to Gibbs Elementary, high school, and middle school yet. We don’t know what the traffic implications are going to be once those are finished.”
To approve a rezoning, paving the way for more development, he feels is premature.
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Thompson is bothered by the acres of farmland going to development.
“You’re not converting any residential or commercial property back to agriculture,” he said. “Once it’s converting from ag it never goes back because it’s not worth the investment. … I would love for folks to have more reverence for their ag land and not be so quick to rezone it to something else.