SMYRNA, Tennessee – The Greater Nashville Regional Council (GNRC) announced the recipients of its 2020 Local Government Awards, which recognize excellence in public service across Middle Tennessee. The city of Smyrna was recognized for excellence in economic development and recreation and commitment to young people.
The regional council, composed of 65 mayors and leaders, two TN General Assembly members, and 26 mayor nominations, provides a forum for collaboration between communities in the greater Nashville area. Each year the GNRC honors its members and partners with two types of awards. Major awards, named after influential leaders throughout the history of the GNRC, are presented to individuals or organizations for demonstrated leadership skills at the regional level. The Excellence in Local Government Award honors district governments and municipalities for projects or initiatives that serve as role models for their peers in the region.
In the Economic Development category, a project was selected as the beneficiary that included improvements to the Smyrna Train Depot building, including a 20 “by 24” stage roof, raised stage area, lighting and sound, and amphitheater-style seating. The train depot improvements are part of the city’s revitalization plan for Lowry Street, which focuses on developing the downtown area as a hub for community events. Known as the Depot District, this is the heart of the Smyrna community and the location for the farmers market, art shows, music events and numerous festivals.
Cedar Stone Park was selected in the Youth Leisure and Engagement category. The city cut the ribbon on June 17, 2020 in the first phase of this park. It was built on land that was purchased by the Rutherford County Schools Board in 2007. This is the first new community park built in Smyrna in 35 years. The first phase includes 4-224 ‘artificial turf youth baseball fields, LED sports field lighting, display panels with message boards, a state-of-the-art concession / toilet building and a large community playground.
“The work of the local communities and professionals working for citizens across Middle Tennessee is inspiring,” said Michael Skipper, executive director of GNRC. “It is an honor to highlight your hard work and to share these best practices with the rest of the region.”
For more information about the Greater Nashville Regional Council or other award winners, visit GNRC.org.
“We are incredibly honored to be recognized in both the Business Development, Leisure and Youth Engagement categories,” said Mary Esther Reed, Mayor of Smyrna. “Revitalizing the heart of our community and providing state-of-the-art facilities for our youth leagues is critical to maintaining the quality of life we enjoy in Smyrna. We are a vibrant, growing community committed to preserving our history while creating opportunities for future generations. “
The Greater Nashville Regional Council was formed by the TN General Assembly to serve as the regional planning and economic development agency for 13 counties in Middle Tennessee. The regional council manages various state and federal grant programs on behalf of local governments and provides its member communities with economic and community development services, policy and planning support, and advice on aging and disability. More information is available at GNRC.org