We're proud of our greenways here in East Tennessee and now, plans are place to bring more of them to a pair of communities.
On Thursday, the plans for the new Maryville to Townsend greenway were shown to the general public. The idea is to build a 13-plus mile connector for existing greenways in Townsend and Maryville.
It's going to be expensive, at cost of over $20 million dollars, but organizers believe it will be worth it in the long run.
"But once it's built it's going to be - I think - a huge draw to this region. People, you know if you look at trails in Chattanooga and other places people will travel across the country to ride their bikes in cool places, and of course when they're here, they'll spend money eating out and staying in hotels and we think that is going to be a huge draw," said Ellen Zavisca, Senior Transportation Planner for the Knoxville Regional Transportation Planning Organization.
Planners believe the greenway could bring in more than $65 million dollars over a 10 year period.
One note, they stress the land they are looking at is right of way land, meaning privately owned property will not be needed. They also stress this project is in the very early stages, and that they're hoping private funds would help cover costs.