A proposed 400-space RV park on the Tennessee River in Marion County has generated considerable concern among residents of the small town of New Hope, Tennessee, where fewer than 1,000 people reside.
According to a local news report, the potential development on the 110-acre Turner farm, located just north of the Shelby Rhinehart Bridge between New Hope and neighboring South Pittsburg, has spurred local resident Jasen King to launch a petition in opposition.
King reported that he has already collected around 100 signatures on his paper petition, which he intends to present at the upcoming town meeting.
The opposition to the RV park began in March when the proposal was first publicly discussed. Rhonda Lawson, another concerned resident, mentioned her suspicions regarding the sudden introduction of the proposed campground.
New Hope Mayor Mark Myers confirmed the possible development during a March 27 meeting of the town’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen.
He informed residents that the city would need to approve rezoning the property for the park’s development and that city leaders have a say in the matter.
Myers acknowledged that it was early in the proposal and revealed limited details about the project or its current status.
Although Myers could not identify the three investors or their business by name, he confirmed that two of them are from California and Washington State.
He also stated that they have been expanding from west to east, building campgrounds across the country.
Their proposal for the New Hope RV park includes 400+ camper sites, a store, and a swimming pool, among other amenities, with a nightly rate of about $60.
During the town board meeting, residents voiced their worries about the impact a large RV park might have on the small town’s services, questioning if there would be any tangible benefit for New Hope or its inhabitants.
They raised concerns about the $60 nightly fee being too low to consider the project a “luxury” operation and wondered if the campground would allow permanent or long-term customers.
New Hope resident Mike Binkley expressed concerns about the possible strain on the town’s water, sewer, and electricity services, given that the campground could temporarily double the town’s population without support from the county or nearby South Pittsburg.
Binkley and other residents also raised questions about the potential noise impact on their daily lives.
Mayor Myers stated that little could be done until the investors took further action. However, he suggested that local ordinances might provide some options for addressing residents’ concerns.
Some attendees at the meeting proposed an ordinance to prevent the construction of campgrounds in New Hope. Myers promised to provide more information at the next town meeting on April 24.
The proposed RV park in New Hope may have implications for private RV park owners in the area, as it could introduce competition and potentially affect their businesses.
As the debate surrounding the project unfolds, it will be crucial for these stakeholders to stay informed and consider any potential impact on their operations.