Possible transformation of Cook Recreation Area on Percy Priest Lake

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – An improved outdoor experience in Percy Priest’s Cook Recreation Area has come to the attention of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District.

The Corps is evaluating a proposed action to lease the Cook Recreation Area on the shore of J. Percy Priest Lake in Hermitage, Tennessee, to provide the public with better outdoor recreation opportunities. The initiative could lead to the renovation and reopening of a 57-site campground that closed in 2004.

“We are in the process of reviewing a long-term parks and recreation lease for the Cook day-use area,” said Trey Church, resource manager for J. Percy Priest Lake. “And what that entails is going out with a public notice of availability, and in that public notice we will be looking at the fact, is there a private interest in taking over the operation and maintenance of this area to increase outdoor leisure activities for the general public?

Church continued, “What that would mean is that we would provide more boat launch lanes here at the ramp, expand parking areas to reduce wait times in and out from the boat ramp. And we also have a 57-site campground that could be reopened that was closed in 2004. On top of that, we could have improved trail systems here. We could increase the size of the range.

Church added that contrary to rumours, the Corps Won’t do allow anyone to build a marina, water park or condos. The potential tenant would only be given permission to improve what already exists, including reviving the campground.

They would like to have the opinion of the public of the users of the park and of the people of the neighborhoods which surround it.

“We just can’t wait to meet the audience,” Church said. “As far as traffic is concerned, we will be contacting experts from the local community to determine appropriate distances for roads and that sort of thing for recreational vehicles. We plan to have a meeting in June where we will address any concerns. And if they have any questions or comments, please contact the Corps of Engineers, and we’ll get back to you.

For more information, see this press release from the US Army Corps of Engineers.

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