Traffic Plans Announced for Labor Day Holiday Events

Communications Director

Kristin Farley
(865) 215-2589

400 Main St., Room 691
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Traffic Plans Announced for Labor Day Holiday Events

Posted: 09/02/2009
Knoxville Police Chief Sterling Owen today announced traffic enforcement plans for the Labor Day holiday weekend. The holiday enforcement effort will begin at 4:00 p.m. on Friday, September 4, 2009, and conclude at Midnight on Monday, September 7, 2009.

Due to multiple major events in the downtown area, the Labor Day holiday is typically one of the busiest holidays for area residents. In addition to the normal increase of motorists traveling through Knoxville to celebrate the last holiday of summer, we will have more than two-hundred thousand people attending the University of Tennessee home football game and the Boomsday fireworks display.

Chief Owen said, "Facilitating traffic flow in and out of the UT area for football traffic as well as the downtown area for the fireworks show has traditionally been one of the biggest challenges for the department. In addition to the increase in the number of vehicles on the roadway, several road closures play a significant role in our traffic plans." 
Henley Street Bridge will close at approximately 7:00 p.m. on Saturday All lanes of the Henley Street Bridge will reopen by 6:00 a.m. Monday West Bound Neyland Drive from Walnut to Lake Loudoun Boulevard will close at 8:00 p.m. Saturday and will remain closed until 6:00 a.m. Monday East Bound Neyland drive from Lake Loudoun to Walnut will close at 10:00 p.m. on Saturday The Gay Street Bridge will close to all vehicular and pedestrian traffic by 9:15 p.m. on Sunday. The bridge will reopen immediately following the fireworks show

For the UT football game, parking on the UT campus will remain off limits except to individuals with parking passes. After the game, Hall of Fame Drive will be closed southbound at Summitt Hill. That closure will prevent access to the James White Parkway from Hall of Fame at the Cal Johnson Recreation Center. KAT busses will provide rides from the Civic Coliseum parking garages for a small fee. No parking will be allowed along Neyland Drive.

Chief Owen said, "Officers will utilize directed and saturation patrols to reduce the speed of motorists traveling throughout the city. We will aggressively enforce posted speed limits while looking for motorists who are driving recklessly or who are driving while impaired." 

During the 2008 Labor Day holiday traffic enforcement effort officers issued 1,281 traffic related citations. Officers also investigated 68 vehicle crashes with 12 of those resulting in personal injuries. The last fatality to be recorded during the Labor Day holiday weekend occurred in 2007.

Chief Owen said, "All citizens need to exercise patience while maneuvering along the streets whether they are in vehicles or on their feet." 
"We also ask that motorists be watchful for our officers directing traffic especially after dark when visibilities are reduced," Chief Owen concluded.