GATLINBURG, Tenn. (WATE) — Officials at Great Smoky Mountains National Park are seeking public input on a proposed expansion to the Park Headquarters and other park buildings in the Sugarlands area.

The public is asked to comment on the Statement of Findings for Wetlands and Floodplains in the Sugarlands area near Park Headquarters. The study was completed to assess potential impacts associated with a proposal to construct new administrative, operationa, and maintenance facilities in the area.

The proposed construction would expand the historic Park Headquarters and replace the existing Little River Ranger Station. The project would also demolish 10 existing buildings in the Sugarlands Operations and Maintenance Complex and replace them with new code-compliant buildings.

All proposed construction would be within the footprint of the existing 10-acre Sugarlands Maintenance Area.

The Statement of Findings acknowledges the proposed project would affect a small wetland (0.004 acres) and the West Prong Little Pigeon River floodplain. The document identifies mitigation measures for unavoidable adverse effects to the small wetland and mitigation measures to reduce flood risks to human health and safety, property, and floodplain values. 

Comments may be submitted online at parkplanning.nps.gov/SugarlandsConstruction or by postal mail. Written comment should be addressed to: Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Sugarlands Wetlands and Floodplains Statement of Findings, 107 Park Headquarters Road, Gatlinburg, TN 37738.

The deadline to submit comments is Jan. 9. Written comments on the proposed projects must be submitted online or postmarked by Jan. 9 to be considered.