MOUNT VERNON — Bruce Gregg and John Curtis of the Knox County Fair Board brought forward some proposed changes to the Knox County Fairgrounds to the Knox County Commissioners, Monday afternoon.
“What our goal here is, we always have a lot of traffic built up on Fairgrounds Road, and a lot of fairs you go to, people go in and park and they walk through to pay. We’re having trouble with getting enough people from organizations to sell tickets and take them. So our solution to it was to design a plan where everybody can park and then walk through,” said Gregg.
“So we’re proposing putting a fence along the west side of Perimeter Drive — across from the horse arenas — up to where the crossroads is, then run another section all the way to the back gate and another section above the horse arenas towards the camping,” said Gregg. He added that the fair board has funding for the project from a grant provided by The Energy Cooperative Operation Round Up Foundation Inc.
Gregg added that additional ticket booths would be purchased and placed in the four locations at the gates. The next question addressed was how to get people into the parking lots, “without coming in to Perimeter Drive, because we’re trying to make it so people get in there and not just jump out and walk in,” said Gregg.
The first idea was to put a new road on an additional property the fair board owns in order to better organize things. Gregg said an engineer came in and gave the board an estimate, which included excavation, which totaled to $272,000. This brought the idea around to a secondary plan where the road would come in around where the directors park and putting a secondary road in, which Gregg estimates they could execute at $30,000.
“We’re going to do most of it ourselves, see if we could get some donated materials,” said Gregg.
Gregg said that the fence would be up by the first of October and one of the routes could possibly be “cut in” before winter. Gregg said it would be a 52-inch woven wire fence with barbs on the top, similar to a farm or pasture fence, which still “serves the purpose.”
“The goal is to get the traffic in, make it easier on the ticket takers so they’re not just sitting there, and security wise,” said Gregg.
Gregg and Curtis brought to light the current issue with the fairgrounds using city water, in which the commissioners, along with Gregg and Curtis, reached no conclusions, and the topic is in continual discussion.
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