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Sparta Pike eyed for future development

Sinclaire Sparkman • Jun 18, 2018 at 8:02 PM

Members of the Lebanon Sparta Pike Economic Study Steering Committee met Monday to discuss an economic study for what’s next for the Sparta Pike area. 

The study area includes the Wilson County Expo Center and James E. Ward Agricultural Center, as well as the area around the Watertown exit at Interstate 40, exit 239. 

Currently, plans include concepts such as a visitor’s center close to the interstate, hotel, dining and entertainment options close to the fairgrounds and a train station for the Music City Star across the street from the Expo Center. The study also includes new ways to link Lebanon’s downtown area to the Expo Center and what could be for the industrial and distribution corridor south of I-40. 

The committee voted to hold an open house to showcase the plans to the public, much like what was done with the South Hartmann Drive economic study. Dates for the open house will be announced soon, according to Lebanon planning director Paul Corder. 

“Hopefully, we can get input from the people who live in the area. I don’t think we’re at the level where we’re dictating that anything is imminent. This is a fairly long process, but this is how we envision the city going. By opening it up, you do kind of hope to get a few different perspectives,” Corder said. 

After the public has a chance to give feedback, the plan will return to the committee for revisions. Once the committee settles on the details, the plan will be sent to the Lebanon Planning Commission for approval. If approved, the plan would then go up for a vote before the Lebanon City Council.

“I do want to emphasize that this is a market analysis,” Corder said. “We’re about to go into the comprehensive place for the city, so this will be taken into consideration for the comprehensive plan. We’re one step ahead of the comprehensive plan, which is good. So we can start to get the land use and zoning and future land use plan together.”

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