City council took a step forward Tuesday night to build a new hospital in West Knoxville. They voted five to three to rezone a site along Middlebrook Pike to allow for medical office space.
It was just a first reading, so it needs another vote of approval. Then Tennova has to receive a Certificate of Need from the state.
Supporters and opponents showed up at the meeting.
City councilman Duane Grieve decided to support the rezoning.
"I feel that what we really were dealing with was a land use issue and not an issue of where we tell a business what they can and cannot do," he said.
"It's not over, that's what I want to tell people. It's not over yet. It is a long fight and we are just starting it and we are not giving up and we are not going away," Rocky Swingle, opponent of the new hospital.
Also on first reading Tuesday, council decided to amend the law banning the wearing of masks in public after concerns that the law was too broad.
They're also moving ahead with plans to tear down the Liberty Building to make way for a new parking garage, as well as allowing pedicabs on a trial basis.