It’s amazing how much can happen in a year. The good news is that most of the Farragut Insider’s Year in Review is good news, except for a few growing pains – and a lot of rain.
The Flood of ’19
Over five inches of rain fell on the already sodden ground on Saturday, Feb. 23, resulting in drama and social media opportunities throughout the town. One of the more dramatic sights from the day was a taxicab that became stranded just south of I-40 on Campbell Station Road. The other big attraction was Founders Park, where the North Fork of Turkey Creek became raging whitewater. A crowd gathered at the park as the creek churned over the tops of bridges.
Farragut Songwriters Showcase
When the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development recommended that tourism organizations create events featuring songwriters during the last week of February, Farragut Tourism Coordinator Karen Tindal listened. The result was the inaugural Farragut Songwriters Showcase – two shows featuring local songwriters, held at the Farragut Casual Pint. It was a hit, and the second Songwriters Showcase is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 29, at the Farragut Community Center. Get more info at visitfarragut.org.
Improvements to Ingles shopping center
In early 2019, Ingles responded to multiple requests from the town to improve its former location with a redevelopment plan. The shell building is now awaiting final inspection and a certificate of completion from the town. This time next year, the Farragut Insider hopes to be able to report on a center full of happy tenants, as well as plans for other vacant properties.
Improvements to properties at Campbell Station Road and Kingston Pike
In February, a new Starbucks opened in Farragut Gateway, the first development built in Farragut’s Town Center overlay. Across Kingston Pike, exterior renovations were being completed at the Campbell Station Inn. The current phase of improvements at the Inn includes two new entrance drives that will connect the property to Village Green Shopping Center, two open lawns, extensive landscaping and a new restroom facility. On the other side of Campbell Station Road, the former gas station has been removed to make way for an indoor food truck concept called Admiral’s Landing.
With these improvements underway, it’s easier to envision the town’s goal of a timeless, pedestrian-friendly downtown area.
Dueling road construction projects
Concord Road is being widened from two lanes to five from the Northshore roundabout to Turkey Creek Road. The TDOT project is the third of three phases that began in 2004 with the goal of creating a better route from Northshore Drive to the interstate. The project is taxing patience and isn’t expected to be completed until fall of 2021, but the result will be a much-improved commute for many.
Virtue Road is also being improved. Changes include widening the road from two nine-foot lanes to two 11-foot lanes with curb and gutter and the addition of an eight-foot multi-use greenway. This project is also expected to be completed in the fall of 2021.
Improving roads requires a long view, but it’s necessary work in a growing community like Farragut.
New stage at Founders Park
We love live music in Farragut, so a new stage was the perfect addition to Founders Park at Campbell Station, home of the Lawn Chair Concert Series. The Farragut Public Works Department built the stage from scratch, and the ribbon was cut at the first concert of the series in June.
Town Administrator David Smoak checked off a bucket list item in May when he hiked to the summit of Mount Hood in Oregon.
The town and the Farragut Museum and Historic Resources Coordinator Julia Barham received awards from the East Tennessee Historical Society in May. The town and the museum were recognized for commissioning the film “A History of Concord and Farragut,” and Barham was recognized for excellence in community leadership, specifically in promoting the preservation of local history.
Town Recorder/Treasurer Allison Myers was presented with the Tennessee Association of Municipal Clerks (TAMCAR) Clerk of the Year award in September. She has worked for the Town since 2001.
Farragut Community Center
Nope, it’s not open yet, but it’s been such an enormous endeavor in 2019 that it can’t be left off this list. The ribbon will be cut on the facility at 10 a.m. on Jan. 16 – the Town’s 40th anniversary. While it’s fun to look back, it’s even more fun to think about the future. Happy New Year!
Town of Farragut marketing and public relations coordinator Wendy Smith is your reliable Farragut Insider.