There's no arguing that downtown Sevierville is picturesque. Right now they're hoping that by burying power lines they can make the space even better.
"We don't necessarily want to be a tourist attraction - we want to be attractive to tourists,” said Sevierville Chamber of Commerce Marketing Director Amanda Marr.
City leaders voted last Monday to pay engineering firm Vaughn and Melton nearly $200,000 to design a plan to bury the utility lines underground. It's a plan that has downtown businesses excited. Jennifer Dyer, the owner of Courthouse Donuts, believes the plan will help her business.
"The percentage of our growth over last year is in the double digits and what is remarkable is when I look at our financials and I look at our data from our guests that are coming in we still have over 60 percent new business coming in,” Dyer said.In addition to burying power lines - the firm will lay out a streetscape
plan to beautify downtown sidewalks and open them up to foot traffic.
"If you've got a small sidewalk, you may not be able to put that table outside and it becomes more walkable. It just looks better and it feels nicer,” explained Andrew Temple with the Sevierville Commons.
The project expands the opportunities for businesses and consumers in the area, while maintaining a small-town feel.
"We want to increase the number of retail, restaurant and entertainment experiences you can have in downtown Sevierville,” Marr said.
"They can come to a downtown area and get that family feeling, where you know people by their first name and you walk in a store and you're greeted,” Temple said.
A farmer's market and outdoor movie theater on the Sevierville Commons are aimed to grow that feeling.
Dyer said improving downtown will capitalize on the natural beauty that surrounds them.
"It is one of the most beautiful places in Sevier County as it is, with those lines gone it becomes one of the most picturesque places, other than the Smokies, in Sevier County,” Dyer said.A spokesman for the City of Sevierville says they expect the finalized plan for burying utilities and upgrading streetscapes
to be complete in the Spring.