BY KEN LITTLE
A proposed land swap between Tusculum College and the City of Tusculum will be among agenda items on the table at 7 p.m. Monday when the Tusculum Board of Mayor and Commissioners holds its regular monthly meeting at city hall, 145 Alexander St.
The land that will change hands if the proposal is approved is far less than an acre in size, but has big potential for the city, Vice Mayor Alan Corley said.
The parcels that would change hands both comprise .18 of an acre.
The land currently owned by Tusculum College is behind Tusculum City Hall.
It is part of a large back yard of a residential property with frontage on Erwin Highway that was recently acquired by the college.
In return, the city would exchange land it owns on an adjacent residential property the college is in the process of purchasing.
ADDITION AN OPTION
The city would get a plot of land it could use in the future to expand city hall behind the section of the building that houses the Tusculum Volunteer Fire Department, Corley said.
And Tusculum College would get a parcel bordering the back yard of the property it is acquiring, and adds to land on the lot along Susong Drive.
Both houses face Erwin Highway (Tennessee Rt. 107), across the street from the college.
The Tusculum College Board of Trustees approved the exchange at a recent meeting, said Corley, who is also a college trustee.
"We just kind of call it a good-neighbor swap," Corley said. "It evens out the property lines, and it gives us the space for a possible expansion."
The "long-range" plan is to expand city hall to provide more room for public meetings, and convert the existing meeting room to office space that could be used by the Tusculum Police Department, mayor and city recorder, Corley said.
"We definitely need a bigger meeting space, and we desperately need more office space," he said.
There are no formal plans to build a city hall addition, but the land swap leaves that option open for the future, Corley said.
"This opportunity came up to get it in a land swap rather than a purchase," he explained. "We recognize there's a need for that. We're just trying to plan ahead."
The trade is expected to be formally approved by the board on Monday night.
In other business, commissioners will consider approval of drainage improvement projects along Erwin Highway and Richland Road.
Commissioners will also consider an ordinance rezoning three properties with frontage along East Andrew Johnson Highway for possible future commercial development, on the recommendation of the Tusculum Planning Commission.
The Planning Commission earlier this month approved rezoning the two lots on East Andrew Johnson Highway and a portion of an adjacent property at 52 Emmert St. from R-01 (low density residential) to B-1 (neighborhood business).
A public hearing will be held before the vote.