NASHVILLE (WSMV) - A Downtown Nashville park is getting a makeover to celebrate the anniversary of passage of the 19th Amendment. The Church Street Park will close on Monday to begin improvements.
The park is widely known downtown for being an area people experiencing homelessness congregate and are being asked to move for construction.
“During the day they come out here and feed. So why not come out and eat?” said Mr. Hall who comes to stay at the Church Street Park.
Mr. Hall says he’s one of many unhoused Nashvillians who come to the park to eat, sleep and wait for help.
“Tomorrow’s a different day, sir. And we’ll pray tomorrow they don’t make us leave neither,” he said.
The park improvements will be made by Metro Parks and the Historic Capitol Corridor Foundation.
According to a release the Church Street Park, located at 600 Church Street in downtown Nashville, is scheduled to temporarily close to the public beginning Monday, July 27 through Sunday, August 16 for work to be completed in honor of the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th amendment. The work will complement local suffrage events that will be celebrated by the nearby Downtown Public Library, Hermitage Hotel, and other organizations.
The Metropolitan Board of Parks and Recreation along with the Metro Council approved an in-kind gift from the Historic Capitol Corridor Foundation to make these physical improvements to the park and to provide public programming, staffing and maintenance of the park in the coming months.
The park will re-open Monday, August 17 through Wednesday, August 19 exclusively for scaled back suffrage-related events that will strictly adhere to CDC guidelines and Metro’s safety protocols related to COVID-19. It will then close from Thursday, August 20 through Monday, October 5 during which time physical improvements will be made to beautify the park and make preparations for public programming and special events later in the year.
Mr. Hall and others NEWS4 spoke with who stay at the park say they’ve been told they will have to move from the park but with the pandemic, don’t know where to turn to.
“If they going to build it into something they should put in something the homeless can use as well,” said Mr. Hall.
A spokesperson with the project says Metro Parks and the Historic Capitol Corridor Foundation “are working closely with Metro Homeless Impact Division which has 15 partner outreach organizations that have been involved to prepare for the parks closing.”
“Move us around to somewhere else we got to find people to help us out,” said Hall.