Here Comes the Neighborhood
The Merrywood-Kingston Pike Estates Neighborhood Association has won another round in a long-running fight that began in 1994 when some owners of property facing Kingston Pike were voluntarily annexed and promptly rezoned from residential to office. The neighbors cried foul, and so did Carlene Malone, who said someone had cut a backroom deal to change the zoning in exchange for annexation. The flap generated considerable media coverage, and Susan Brown, former director of development, denied the charge, as did the property owners, who, in 1997, sued the neighborhood association to break long-standing deed restrictions on non-residential use that had been in place since 1958. They lost, took it up to the court of appeals, where they lost again this summer. They have another 30 days to take it to the state Supreme Court.
"A win for neighborhoods," says defendant Peg Griffin.
We Particularly Like Him on the Album with Bonnie Raitt
The best moment in election coverage came from Channel 6's Sunday talking head show when newsreader Lori Tucker, filling in for host Mike Hammond, attempted to shift the topic of conversation to the gubernatorial race. Referring to the embarrassing (to some) surprise (to some) win of John J. Hooker in the Democratic primary, Tucker turned to the panelists and asked:
"What about this John Lee Hooker?"
There'll Be a New Chairman in Town
Look for Farragutian John Griess to be unseated as County Commission's chairman when that body holds its reorganizational meeting Sept. 1. Leo Cooper of Halls is the likely successor, and is a leader in the so-called "county faction," which is generally zealous in watchdogging encroachments by the city, real or perceived. It should be remembered that Cooper, a former chairman, won a vigorous primary battle with Steve Nash, who enjoyed the open support of Ashe administration advocates and whose campaign hit the wall when he was endorsed by former unification cheerleader Bill Baxter. Lines will be clearly drawn.
Remember the Fort
These are perilous times for those concerned with retaining the historical heritage of Fort Sanders in the face of development, but the Historic Fort Sanders Neighborhood Association is fighting the good fight. And you can helpwhile getting entertained to boot. A benefit show to help defray legal costs will be held Friday, Aug. 21 at the Laurel Theatre, 8 p.m. Hitting the stage will be local men and big-deal recording artists R.B. Morris and Scott Miller of the V-Roys, so consider your $6 well spent. Likewise, on Sept. 1, jazz-funk-latin band Claymation Quartet will perform a benefit show at the A-1 Art Space at 8 p.m. ($3).
For Those Who Are Counting...
Metro Pulse hit its seventh anniversary Aug. 19 (first cover story: Goose Creek Symphony), and we're marking the occasion by getting together at the Great Southern Brewing Company after work on Wednesday, Aug. 26. Feel free to join us. We'll be the ones making toasts to lost youth.
Campo de Market
UT Associate Professor of Architecture Mark Schimmenti got back this week from his six-month Rome Prize sabattical. As it turns out, he spent much of his time in Rome thinking about Knoxville. He was fascinated with one of Rome's best-used piazzas, the Campo de-Fiori. With several good restaurants, the Campo was buzzing with diverse activity all day. What most impressed Schimmenti was that the Campo seemed almost exactly the same size as Knoxville's Market Square. Schimmenti faxed home for figures that confirmed his impression. In fact, he adds, "One thing Market Square has that the Campo de-Fiori does not is good architecture."