USA TODAY US Edition
Gatlinburg: Despite closing for more than a month because of COVID-19, Great Smoky Mountains National Park had its second-busiest year on record last year, with 12,095,720 total visits, according to a news release. But the surge in use has brought problems with traffic, overflowing parking lots, crowded bathrooms, damage and litter. Over the past year, park managers have worked with local communities and visitors to try to solve the challenges. Through virtual workshops and online comments, the park collected more than 2,000 ideas now being used to develop a pilot project that will address congestion in 2021.