KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – A new greenway will connect Harriet Tubman Park with the Knoxville Botanical Garden and Arboretum.

Almost $4 million of the cost is being funded federally and administered through the Tennessee Department of Transportation. The city’s contribution will be $988,054, 20% of the cost.

Detailed design work is scheduled to start later this spring and public meetings to gather input from residents will follow. Once the path of the greenway is determined, right-of-way acquisition will be the next-to-last step, with construction currently anticipated to begin in spring 2024. 

“This greenway will be a game changer,” Mayor Indya Kincannon said. “It will connect destinations and give East Knoxville residents a new healthy way to safely navigate the city. Multimodal amenities like this make Knoxville more equitable and more sustainable.”  

The greenway will skirt Austin Homes and Vine Magnet Middle School on the western end. It will cross through Dr. Walter Hardy Park and the heart of the Five Points community before crossing Williams Creek and connecting with the Botanical Garden trails to the east. 

The project was initially approved in 2019, but the original federal grant funding didn’t cover the majority of the cost. The City Council voted unanimously to support the mayor’s request to amend the agreement with TDOT to increase funding to nearly $5 million.