The city of Kingsport plans to expand the parking lot of the aquatic center by 120 to 125 spaces by Memorial Day. Times-News file photo by Ned Jilton II.
KINGSPORT — The city of Kingsport plans to expand the parking lot of the aquatic center by 120 to 125 spaces by Memorial Day, in order to meet the expected demand this coming summer. The expansion will mark the second time in less than a year additional parking spaces will have been added to the facility.
Kingsport advertised this past week it would be accepting bids for the additional spaces and according to Chris McCartt, assistant to the city manager, the city would like to have the work done by Memorial Day.
"We're basically looking to complete the parking that was laid out in the master plan for the facility," McCartt said. "What we have found is as you drive out there, on any given day, you'll see people parking on the perimeter of the parking lot, in the grass area. As we have swim meets, coupled with big events at the Y, we see the need for additional spaces."
The additional parking spaces will stretch around the perimeter of the existing parking lot, from the "Stop" sign near the entrance to the service road behind the YMCA. McCartt said a few of the spaces would be parallel spaces, but a majority would be typical, 90-degree parking spaces.
These spaces were identified in the original master plan for the facility, but due to budgetary constraints were not included in the initial phase of the project.
Over the past year, Kingsport has attempted to prevent people from parking around the perimeter by stretching yellow caution tape between the light poles. The YMCA even sent out an email to its members advising them to not park on that grass.
But it's been very difficult to manage and enforce.
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