Final Environmental Impact Statement and General Management Plan Amendment on Elkmont
Contact: Bob Miller, (865) 436-1207
Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials have announced that the Notice of Availability of the Elkmont Historic District Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) and General Management Plan Amendment was published on May 1 in the Federal Register. The Elkmont Historic District, contains 74 vacant structures which were constructed as vacation retreats in the two decades just prior to the Park's establishment in 1934. The District is located about eight miles from Gatlinburg in the Sevier County, Tenn., portion of the national park
The FEIS outlines the National Park Service's plans to preserve 18 cabins and the Appalachian Clubhouse and to document and remove the remaining structures. The plan is the result of a five year public process that evaluated the natural, cultural and cost impacts of six alternatives ranging from removing all the buildings, which was the action called for in the Park's 1982 General Management Plan, to preserving all the buildings for use as concession-operated lodging and a restaurant.
The core grouping of 18 preserved buildings would include a cabin that was associated with David C. Chapman, a leader in the movement to create the national park and the Spence Cabin along Little River.
Under provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act, the NPS may execute a Record of Decision (ROD) no sooner than 30 days following the publication of the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Notice of Availability in the Federal Register.
Copies of the FEIS will also be available for review at the following locations:
Pack Memorial Library, 67 Haywood Street, Asheville, North Carolina 28801;
Did You Know?
An experimental program to reintroduce elk to the park was begun in 2001. Elk once roamed the Smokies, but were eliminated from the region in the mid 1800s by over-hunting and loss of habitat. Other animals successfully reintroduced to the park include river otters and barn owls. More...