Gay Street Intersection Improvements Scheduled; Closures Being Sept. 11

Communications Director

Kristin Farley
(865) 215-2589

400 Main St., Room 691
Knoxville, TN 37902

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News item

Gay Street Intersection Improvements Scheduled; Closures Being Sept. 11

Posted: 09/06/2017
Crews will be making improvements to three Gay Street intersections – at Clinch, Church and Cumberland avenues – with a series of week-long closures, one at each intersection as it is upgraded.

All three closures will be complete closures of the intersections during construction, and each will last a week at a time, running from 7 a.m. on a Monday through 7 p.m. on a Friday.

Here’s the schedule:

• Gay Street at Clinch Avenue – Sept. 11-15
• Gay Street at Church Avenue – Sept. 18-22
• Gay Street at Cumberland Avenue – Sept. 25-29

Crews will install a decorative stamped asphalt system that resembles a brick surface. The product is a much more durable, cost-effective asphalt stamp that eliminates the need for ongoing brick replacement. This decorative resurfacing will resemble the crosswalks recently installed along the Cumberland Avenue Corridor, except that these on Gay Street will cover the entire surface of the intersection.

“These decorative intersections replace the brick medallions that were in terrible shape before this project, and the new pattern retains the feel of the old medallions while calling more attention to pedestrian safety,” said Jim Hagerman, Director of Engineering. “The improvements will also give the corridor an added touch of character, if it’s even possible to add more character to the high-profile cultural destination that Gay Street is.”

In 2012, the American Planning Association named Gay Street one of its Top 10 “Great Streets in America.” The City began streetscape projects to improve Gay Street in the 1980s, and the 700 Block was the only block that had remained unimproved until construction for this project began in 2016. This month’s intersection improvements at Cumberland and Church are the final touches for the 700 Block project.

Earlier work in the 700 Block included replacement of crumbling curbs, substitution of broken concrete sidewalks with brick pavers, upgrade of the sewer and drainage infrastructure, and installation of street trees – a combined $1.5 million investment.

The intersection and 700 Block upgrades complement the Gay Street Brick and Sidewalk Replacement Project recently finished on the stretch between Summit Hill Drive and Church Avenue.