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The purpose of this project is to create a more attractive, economically successful, vibrant and safe Cumberland Avenue.


This project was conceived through a planning study, “A History of Connection, Cumberland Avenue Corridor Plan” by Glatting Jackson Kercher Aglin, Inc, which was adopted by MPC and City Council in 2007. The key results, concepts, and recommendations focused on two things, the streetscape and the urban design plan.


The streetscape recommendations were for a road diet which includes reducing CumberlandAvenue from four travel lanes to three lanes, one of which would be a dedicated turn lane. This would allow for wider sidewalks and improved pedestrian spaces.


The urban design plan recommends new zoning regulations including a form base code which would allow for a mix of uses such as residential, office and commercial on one parcel. Also there are recommendations for improved open spaces, new parks and as well as more public parking resources.





Vaughn & Melton was selected by the CIty of Knoxville as the civil engineering firm for the design of the Cumberland Avenue Streetscapes project. In addition to providing the design of the new street layout, Vaughn & Melton provides construction engineering and inspection services, which monitors all construction aspects of the of the streetscape, which began June 8, 2015.

One unique service  provided by Vaughn & Melton is a comprehensive public relations and communications plan. Primary components of this plan include the design and maintenance of, the CumberlandConnect mobile app, Facebook (CumberlandConnect) and Twitter (@VisitCumberland). All of these elements were created to provide the various levels of information needed for the myriad of stakeholders within the project scope, which includes: 58 Cumberland Avenue Merchants • University of Tennessee Students, Faculty, Staff, Parents and Alumni • The Children's Hospital staff, patients and families • Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center staff, patients and families and Patrons and Visitors to the Cumberland Avenue Corridor.


The Cumberland Avenue Corridor study will chart the course for a more inviting, vibrant and safe Cumberland Avenue that enhances the connections to the University of Tennessee and area employers and improves the residential and retail character of the district while effectively moving pedestrians, motor vehicles and bicycles.

MPC adopted the corridor study on April 12, 2007. City Council adopted it on May 8, 2007. If you have questions about the study, please contact MPC at 865-215-2500.



The Streetscape Plan proposes a "road diet" for Cumberland reducing the street from four lanes to three lanes with a median to direct left turn movements. In the spring of 2013, the City working with stakeholders and with Council approval, split the project into two phases.

Phase I includes improvements to Cumberland Avenue from Alcoa Highway to 22nd Street. The primary objective of Phase I is to address the utilities, roadway capacity, turn lanes, signals, and sidewalks in preparation of Phase II.

Phase II includes improvements to Cumberland Avenue from 22nd Street to west of 16th Street. This phase will include underground utilities (tie to Phase I work) narrowing of Cumberland Avenue from four lanes to three lanes, one of which will be a dedicated median/turn lane, widening sidewalks, adding street trees, plantings and street furniture, accommodations for transit and transit users, and new cross walks.


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