City Commission approves partial closure of Parkway this weekend



With a number of Gatlinburg business establishments opening over the course of the past week, the City is giving patrons and businesses a unique and rare twist to help practice social distancing in the downtown area.
 
Approved by the Gatlinburg City Commission in a special called meeting on Thursday morning, members voted to allow a partial closure of Parkway in the downtown area this coming weekend, May 8-May 10.
 
The closure will span from noon on Friday until 2 p.m. on Sunday afternoon.
 
Parkway will be partially closed from its intersection with Cherokee Orchard Road at Traffic Light No. 6 to its intersection of Reagan Drive. The two outer lanes of Parkway will be blocked off for pedestrian use, while the two inside lanes of Parkway will be for use by motorists. Barricades will be installed along the lanes to separate the pedestrian and vehicle traffic. Five crosswalks will also span Parkway in this section for safe crossing for pedestrians.
 
The City is providing this unique opportunity for visitors to enjoy Gatlinburg and practice social distancing, which will allow our business community the chance to help reopen the City’s economy in safe fashion for everyone.
 
Safety precautions and sanitization procedures are also being taken, as well as educational messaging to help disseminate the steps of how to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Signage has been installed across the downtown area and will continue to be installed, encouraging individuals to follow CDC guidelines to remain healthy and safe.
 
As most City of Gatlinburg facilities reopened this past week, including public restrooms at the McMahan/Parkway Garage and Gatlinburg Convention Center, safety precautions and sanitization procedures have been implemented to help keep the community, residents, employees and visitors safe. All City facilities will be heavily sanitized during the phased reopening.
 
The City has purchased foggers to help with sanitizing and disinfecting facilities and will regularly clean municipal facilities to help reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19.
 
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