New zoning in the works for Bearden neighborhood

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KNOXVILLE (WATE) – The Bearden Village area of West Knoxville may soon look different over the next few years. City leaders and neighbors are working on a plan for future growth.

Tuesday night’s Metropolitan Planning Commission meeting with community members regarding the new mixed use district zoning for Bearden Village was all about feedback before leaders present these new regulations next month. Currently, people are excited about the possibilities. New zoning regulations are in the works to make this area of Bearden a vibrant area.

“I like the idea. I just want to make sure that we’re going to be helping developers with their new ideas and not be a hindrance,” said David Williams, a longtime resident in the area.

Along with residential units being mixed in with commercial areas, planners at Tuesday night meeting are proposing more sidewalks, greenways and bike lanes to make the area pedestrian friendly.

Business owner Blaine Keller thinks this will make a huge impact for everyone.

“Imagine a one-stop shop where you can really walk to restaurants, you can go shopping and if there was a midrise condominium or something you could also be living here,” said Keller.

All rezoning changes that will make Bearden have a village type of atmosphere setting everyone up for success.

“Almost like a downtown type of space that’s what we’re trying to create,” said Mike Reynolds, a member with the Metropolitan planning commission.

The new proposed zoning regulations won’t be presented to the planning commission until October 13. Once it passes that phase, it will have to be approved by Knoxville City Council. If passed in November by the city council, planners say new developments could begin by the end of this year or early next year.

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