Cityview Riverwalk Grand Opening Dec. 10

Communications Director

Eric Vreeland
evreeland@knoxvilletn.gov
(865) 215-3480

400 Main St., Room 654A
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Cityview Riverwalk Grand Opening Dec. 10

Posted: 12/01/2010
Mayor Bill Haslam will preside over the grand opening of the Cityview Riverwalk on Friday, December 10, 2010 at 11:30 AM. The event will take place on the Riverwalk behind the Cityview Condominiums, located at 445 W. Blount Avenue.

Free parking will be available in the Cityview at Riverwalk Condominiums garage. Following the ribbon-cutting the condominiums will be open for tours until 2 p.m.

"I'm excited about opening the Riverwalk," Haslam said. "It's an event we've been looking forward to here in the city and it's always great to see the concrete results of good planning and design."

The Cityview Riverwalk is the first section of a planned 3-mile long South Waterfront Riverwalk and is being paid for using a tax-increment financing (TIF) district created in concert with the Cityview Condominiums. The development agreement leverages $2.8 million in future city and county property taxes for public improvements that will be generated by the $30 million, 124-units condominium project.

The debt for the Riverwalk is expected to be paid off within 15 years. The City also used a portion of the TIF loan to reconstruct W. Blount Avenue from the Norfolk-Southern Railroad Bridge to Hawthorne Avenue.

"This is an excellent example of a public-private partnership that provides public benefits, encourages private redevelopment interest, and bolsters the city's tax base," said Dave Hill, senior director of the South Waterfront Development. "The city has been able to purchase and improve riverfront property and we appreciate Raja Jubran and Jim Clayton taking over and completing what had been a financially troubled condominium project.

The Riverwalk is 600 feet long, with an upper main level and a sloped lower level that provides access to the Cityview marina, and will be connected to future Riverwalk sections along the Tennessee River. There is an observation deck, a large stepped seating area for waterfront events, benches and sitting walls, lighting, landscaping.

The related Blount Avenue improvements included signalizing the railroad underpass and creating a pedestrian-friendly walkway through it, developing a new urban street section, landscaping and street trees, vehicular and pedestrian lighting, and curbside parking spaces.

The lighting uses LED technology to reduce electricity consumption, and the landscape islands were designed to filter and retain stormwater to avoid the installation of an irrigation system.

"There has been a lot of interest and public input in the South Waterfront project and we're grateful to the many people who have contributed to making this part of it a success," Haslam said. "There is wonderful potential along the river and despite difficult economic conditions in recent years we're making progress."