PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (WATE) — Dollywood is partnering with Holtz Builders, Inc. to build a new housing project for seasonal workers. They broke ground on Thursday, Aug. 12, and shared some renderings of the project.
The four-story building will be constructed at the site of the Pigeon Forge theme park. It will hold three floors of housing and one floor for office space. The three housing floors will have a kitchen, and the building can hold 756 employees.
“It’s a new ‘U’ shape building with ground-level retail and office space,” said Rick Rogers, VP of Business Operations for Holtz Builders.
At this time, this is all considered to be phase one of the project, a phase two will take place, however, no information is available on those plans at this time. The project is going to cost around $20 million and phase one is supposed to be completed in mid-2022.
Officials with Dollywood said that at the moment they have more job opportunities than employees. So, they hope a housing project like this one will help bring in more people to work.
Finding employees has been a problem, not only for Dollywood but for all of Pigeon Forge according to Pigeon Forge Mayor, David Wear, “You’re addressing a need that not only you have but that our community has had especially through covid with housing and employment. So, this is a wonderful step.”
The theme park was originally built with creating jobs in mind. Now, Dollywood is focusing on finding seasonal employees a place to stay.
President of Dollywood Company, Eugene Naughton said, “We want to make it a very livable experience. not only do we want them to learn about hospitality here but I want them to want to come back and live here in our community.”