NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - Even on a weekday afternoon, Lower Broadway’s crosswalks are working overtime.
But if you make your way down here on a Friday or Saturday night, you might find the roadway has been completely closed down for pedestrians.
At the beginning of the summer, TDOT gave Metro Nashville Police the discretion to close the road to address heavy foot traffic and gridlock downtown.
“It’s only at nighttime. They close it down at 10:30 or 11:00 or whenever the crowds get really crazy,” said Tootsie’s owner Steve Smith.
Tourists News4 spoke with said they would like to see this kind of thing every night.
But downtown business owners like Smith, want it to remain on a contingency plan
“I’m not a fan of it being closed full time and no one on Broadway is — none of the merchants are,” he said. “We don’t want to become Beale Street, we don’t want to become the old Second Avenue.”
Smith argues it will lead to an influx of crime downtown.
“We just don’t want it to get out of hand,” Smith said.
One tourist we spoke with saw it as a plus for businesses.
"I think if your businesses kind of band together they can make it a positive thing," she said.
A spokesperson for TDOT says this is not permanent, but say they fully support MNPD calling the shots down on Broadway as to when closing the road is necessary.