Chicka­mauga re­nais­sance plan be­gin­ing to show re­tail growth

Walker County Messenger - - Front Page - By Mike O’Neal

Plans to re­vi­tal­ize the his­toric town of Chicka­mauga, crafted over a pe­riod of months filled with meet­ings and sur­veys, are be­gin­ning to bear fruit.

Par­tic­u­larly re­gard­ing growth of the re­tail op­er­a­tions, both in its down­town busi­ness district and along U.S. High­way 27 to the east.

The down­town mer­chants have part­nered with lo­cal govern­ment to host a monthly se­ries of “First Fri­day” block par­ties. The pur­pose is twofold, these block par­ties of­fer op­por­tu­ni­ties to show­case small shops or busi­nesses, and at the same time en­ter­tain res­i­dents and at­tract vis­i­tors.

Fanci Moore, the city’s direc­tor of tourism and events, said July’s event at­tracted nearly as many peo­ple — roughly 3,000 — as ac­tu­ally live within the city lim­its.

The city is not only draw­ing vis­i­tors, it is adding to its core of bou­tiques and mom-and-pop shops.

As an ex­am­ple, the city coun­cil this month ap­proved leas­ing a city-owned build­ing at 110 Gor­don Ave. to Shan­non Sal­is­bury, owner of Chic Av­enue De­signs. Sal­is­bury has re­lo­cated her busi­ness from Rossville.

In ad­di­tion to re­newed in­ter­est down­town, the area’s new­est Hardee’s has opened at the in­ter­sec­tion of U.S. High­way 27 with Lee and Gor­don Mill Road and, about a block away, con­struc­tion has be­gun on an O’Reilly’s Auto Parts store.

And while there are new — or, in the case of Chic Av­enue, vin­tage re­tail growth — the city coun­cil has adopted an or­di­nance re­gard­ing trees.

City Man­ager Micheal Haney de­scribed the new or­di­nance as mak­ing cer­tain the main­te­nance or re­moval of shade trees is reg­u­lated. The or­di­nance ap­plies to trees on pub­lic spa­ces and in right of ways —not on pri­vate land.

The “tree or­di­nance” will es­tab­lish rules for the trim­ming/re­moval of trees as nec­es­sary to pro­tect the safety of util­ity work­ers and main­tain de­liv­ery of util­i­ties ei­ther above or be­low ground. The new law also re­quires re­place­ment of trees that are re­moved.

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