KUB installs new lights meant to provide safety for Tazewell Pike, Gibbs schools

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The lights are a little brighter outside Gibbs High, Middle and Elementary schools. Construction crews with Knoxville Utility Board recently installed 12 lights along a half-mile stretch of Tazewell Pike near the schools.

Community leaders and Knox County Commissioner Richie Beeler reached out to Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs, asking for help to make the area safer.

“As you can imagine, the entire stretch – before the lights were installed – was very dark and created a precarious situation, both on the road and on the sidewalk,” Mayor Jacobs said. “But the public realized there was a need for improvements and our team and KUB really stepped up to make this project happen.”

Commissioner Beeler agreed.

“Fixing this was a huge priority for this area,” he said. “Often times during big events, like football games, people would have to park across the street and cross what could be an extremely dangerous area because there were no lights.”

The county paid roughly $12,000 to install the lights and will maintain them.

“We were happy to work with Knox County to install lighting on Tazewell Pike between Gibbs High School and Gibbs Elementary School through our outdoor lighting program, which provides a variety of energy-efficient LED lights to meet the needs of our customers,” Gabriel Bolas, president and CEO of KUB, said.

Jim Snowden, senior director of the Knox County Engineering and Public Works Department, said officials also are looking into possibly building a pedestrian bridge at some point in the area.

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