Neighbors worry over the future of West Knoxville green space


KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Right next to a West Knoxville apartment complex, there’s a large green field that connects directly to Knox County’s greenways. Neighbors say it’s the perfect spot to walk your dog, go on a picnic, or take a jog, but they’re worried it may not stay that way.

A city council ordinance is on the table to rezone the area located at 8300 East Walker Springs Lane, which would allow multi family residential properties to be built on the area.

The people who live near the green space are asking city council to vote no. If passed, the ordinance would allow a new apartment complex to be built near a heavily used greenway that sits directly behind several homes in the St. Andrews subdivision on West Hills.

Neighbors are making it clear, they don’t want this new complex in their backyards. A petition opposing the ordinance was created and now has more than 2,000 signatures. There are also 95 public comments on the city council ordinance.

Jennifer Borth is one of those voices against the ordinance. Her house is adjacent to the greenway and the space where the complex would be built. She started the petition.

“This is my dream home. I’ve lived here for 10 years. I love this green space and it’s really hard to envision a three story building just feet from my back fence,” Borth said. “This is truly life-changing for me. Every single window from my home, I will have a building behind me.”

The vote was scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 12, but was delayed. Members of the community are meeting with the developer on Friday. Council members thought it may be too early to vote. The vote will now take place at the Jan. 26 meeting.

WATE reached out to the applicant of the rezoning request for comment. At the time of this story, we had not heard back.

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