The city of Nashville is looking to improve Centennial Park and eliminating the parking spots is part of that plan.
A preliminary draft and presentation of improvements to the city’s most popular park suggest the park will become vehicle free when renovations are complete.
The news doesn’t sit particularly well with those who frequent the green space located along West End Avenue and across the street from Vanderbilt University.
Many of those visiting the park on Thursday told News 2 they enjoy the convenience of driving to Centennial Park and parking there.
“I like to be able to park where everybody is,” Carolyn Kennedy said. “I feel safe.”
Victor Chatman added, “It’s going to be kind of inconvenient.”
Carol McDaniel told News 2 she enjoys eating lunch in Centennial Park.
She drives to the park and was disappointed to hear the parking spots may soon be going away.
“I would not like to walk a long distance,” she said. “It’s a beautiful park, it’s used a lot and I think it’s great like it is.”
Greg Walker’s biggest concern with the planned renovations is for the elderly and handicap. He fears they’ll be less able to access the park if they can’t drive there.
“Maybe they’d be a compromise,” he said, “like maybe only close down half the parking spaces or the roads, but I think it’s really going to be tragic if they close all of it because [there are] a lot of people like me who simply won’t come anymore.”
Chatman added, “It’s all about convenience, just make it convenient even if you only had handicap parking inside the park.”
The Centennial Park Committee hopes to vote on a final plan before the end of the year.
Submit your ideas on ways to improve Centennial Park online at Nashville.gov/Parks.