‘Special Event Zone’ suggested for Lower Broadway amid pandemic

Coronavirus

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Nashville could advance to Phase Three of the Roadmap to Reopening again in a few weeks, which would mean bigger crowds near bars and restaurants downtown.

Some Metro council members are floating around an idea they believe would boost business while reopening the area safely.

Metro council members Jeff Syracuse, Freddie O’Connell and Angie Henderson have had preliminary conversations about transforming Lower Broadway into a “Special Event Zone,” similar to how the city sets up for New Year’s Eve and Fourth of July celebrations. The timing and what it would look like is up for discussion and consideration.

Cities across the country, like New York and Chicago, have shut down several roadways to help restaurants safely operate and keep customers six feet apart during the pandemic.

To make it a reality, multiple departments, including Mayor Cooper’s office, Metro police and the Civic Design Center, have to be on board. The idea was briefly discussed in a Metro safety meeting this week.

“What we’ve seen so far is that you give them inch and they try to take a yard,” Councilman Syracuse said. “I don’t see that mentality going away anytime soon. So, as we start to see numbers getting better again, which is great, we start thinking about if this continues, we could eventually get to Phase 3 whenever. If we are going to do the same thing in a Phase 3, and make it kind of a free for all, I fear for the worst.”

News 2 reached out to the Metro Public Health Department about the idea. They said they are not aware of the movement, but Director Dr. Michael Caldwell said he would support it.

COVID-19 in Tennessee

(This reflects what the TDH is reporting each day at 2 p.m. CST )

Stay with News 2 for continuing coverage of the COVID-19 Pandemic.

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