Chilhowee Park & Exhibition Center Strategic Plan

General Manager

Mary Bogert
[email protected]
Convention Center
(865) 251-6001
(865) 215-8910
Chilhowee Park
(865) 215-1450

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Chilhowee Park logoFrom national expositions in the early 1900s that drew luminaries like Theodore Roosevelt and Helen Keller to serving as home to the Tennessee Valley Fair for the past 100 years, Chilhowee Park & Exposition Center has a rich and vibrant history.

In late 2018, Mayor Madeline Rogero’s administration and City Council asked for a strategic study of possible future uses of Chilhowee Park and Exposition Center. Consultants Convention Sports and Leisure International (CSL) was selected through an RFP process.

CSL presented their recommendations at a public meeting on Oct. 16, 2019 at 6 p.m. in the Jacob Building at Chilhowee Park, 3301 E. Magnolia Ave. The presentation and study are linked below.


Comments or questions about the study can be sent to [email protected].

The presentation and study from the Oct. 16, 2019 meeting are available below:

View Chilhowee Park & Exposition Center Public Meeting Presentation [PDF] (27 MB)

Chilhowee Park & Exposition Center Strategic Plan [PDF] (21 MB)



In August of 2018, the City sought proposals from qualified and responsible firms or teams for the development of a site Master Plan that will guide the future strategic direction and development of approximately 135 total acres of City property. This acreage includes Zoo Knoxville, encompassing 53 acres, as an adjoining property which already has an approved strategic plan, master plan, and related capital campaign plan in place. The Chilhowee Park & Exposition Center contains about 81 acres and includes leasehold interests of The Muse, Tennessee Valley Fair, and Golden Gloves Charities. The purpose of the RFP was to determine the most responsive and responsible firm qualified to provide planning services to assist the City in developing the future direction and growth of Chilhowee Park and Exposition Center in conjunction with the existing development plans of Zoo Knoxville, leaseholders, Magnolia Avenue corridor, and redevelopment of the Burlington neighborhood. Convention Sports and Leisure International (CSL) was chosen as the consulting group.

View the RFP for Chilhowee Park & Exhibition Center Strategic Plan Development [PDF] (file also contains addendums and tabulation sheet)

Chilhowee Park mtgPUBLIC MEETINGS

City representatives and members of the consulting team Convention Sports and Leisure International (CSL) held public meetings with Chilhowee Park stakeholders including current park tenants, residents of surrounding neighbors, public officials and event booking agents. 

Chilhowee Park & Exposition Center Stakeholder Input Being Gathered - 01/31/19

Chilhowee Park Stakeholders Participate in Planning its Future - 02/07/19


Also as part of the strategic study of possible future uses of Chilhowee Park and Exposition Center, the City of Knoxville invited people to participate in a communitywide survey. The survey was offered June 17 to June 30, 2019. 

View Communitywide Survey


CSL will integrate the community survey responses with feedback collected from stakeholders and public meetings and present its recommendations at a public meeting in the fall of 2019.


History of Chilhowee Park and Exhibition Center

Centennial Conservation Expo 1913-2013

Liberal Arts Bldg 1913
Liberal Arts Building at Chilhowee Park. Photograph by James E. Thompson - Courtesy of the Calvin M. McClung Historical Collection, Knox County Public Library.