Cumberland Ave. Project to Create New Housing, Retail, Parking

Communications Director

Kristin Farley
[email protected]
(865) 215-2589

400 Main St., Room 691
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Cumberland Ave. Project to Create New Housing, Retail, Parking

Posted: 02/10/2023
Construction of Hub on Campus – a transformative private development on Cumberland Avenue that will include more than 800 apartments, 30,000 square feet of retail space and a 10-story parking garage – is slated to begin today.

City permits have been approved to allow the developer’s construction crews to demolish existing buildings in the block bounded by Cumberland, White Avenue, 19th Street and 20th Street. A traffic control permit also has been approved.

“This half-a-billion-dollar private investment is a great example of why the City’s and KUB’S public investment in the Cumberland Avenue Streetscape Project several years back was both strategic and necessary,” Mayor Indya Kincannon said.

“A major part of that streetscape project involved modernizing the utility and stormwater infrastructure, some of which had pre-dated World War II, so that it could accommodate growth and new private investment. The streetscape improvements also made Cumberland much safer for pedestrians, and the number of traffic crashes are way down.”

Kincannon pointed to some of the benefits of Cumberland Avenue’s form-based code generally and the Hub on Campus project specifically.

“Hub on Campus brings much-needed housing in a big way, and more apartments eases both the citywide shortage and the University of Tennessee’s shortage,” the Mayor said. “Increased housing availability drives down rent prices citywide.

“This project also will create new entertainment and retail amenities, further invigorating the Cumberland corridor and the UT community.

“Lastly, private commercial investment creates jobs and expands our local economy. In new local taxes alone, Hub on Campus will be generating tens of millions of dollars in coming years.”

Eventually, over several years, four blocks on both sides of Cumberland Avenue will be remade with four 8- to 10-story buildings. Considering the size of the Hub project, the first phase of demolition and reconstruction will have little direct impact on motorists and pedestrians.

For the initial demolition sequence, the sidewalk on the north side of Cumberland between 19th and 20th streets will be closed for two weeks, beginning today. Soon thereafter, the general contractor will construct a protected walkway that will cover the sidewalk, which is anticipated to remain open for the majority of the project’s construction, with closures occurring periodically.

No long-term street closures are anticipated. Sidewalks on the southern side of White Avenue, the eastern side of 20th Street and the western side of 19th Street will be closed until summer 2025. (The sidewalks on the opposite sides of each street will remain open.) A total of only 11 public parking spaces will be lost.

Besides Hub Knoxville eventually housing more than 2,100 residents, its garage to be built off White Avenue will accommodate about 2,100 vehicles – and that includes 212 parking spaces for Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center and 85 spaces for East Tennessee Children’s Hospital.