Knoxville is a city in the U.S. state of Tennessee, and the county seat of Knox County. As of the 2010 census, the city has a population of 178,874, and is Tennessee’s third largest city after Nashville and Memphis. Knoxville is the principal city of the Knoxville Metropolitan Statistical Area, which was 868,546 in 2015.
First settled in 1786, Knoxville was the first capital of Tennessee. The city struggled with geographic isolation throughout the early 19th century. The arrival of the railroad in 1855 led to an economic boom. During the Civil War, the city was bitterly divided over the secession issue, and was occupied alternately by both Confederate and Union armies. Following the war, Knoxville grew rapidly as a major wholesaling and manufacturing center. The city’s economy stagnated after the 1920s as the manufacturing sector collapsed, the downtown area declined and city leaders became entrenched in highly partisan political fights. Hosting the 1982 World’s Fair helped reinvigorate the city, and revitalization initiatives by city leaders and private developers have had major successes in spurring growth in the city, especially the downtown area.
Knoxville is the home of the flagship campus of the University of Tennessee, whose sports teams, the Tennessee Volunteers, are popular in the surrounding area. Knoxville is also home to the headquarters of the Tennessee Valley Authority, the Tennessee Supreme Court‘s courthouse for East Tennessee, and the corporate headquarters of several national and regional companies. As one of the largest cities in the Appalachian region, Knoxville has positioned itself in recent years as a repository of Appalachian culture and is one of the gateways to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Knoxville is roughly divided into the Downtown area and sections based on the four cardinal directions: North Knoxville, South Knoxville, East Knoxville, and West Knoxville. Downtown Knoxville traditionally consists of the area bounded by the river on the south, First Creek on the east, Second Creek on the west, and the railroad tracks on the north, though the definition has expanded to include the U.T. campus and Fort Sanders neighborhood, and several neighborhoods along or just off Broadway south of Sharp’s Ridge (“Downtown North”). While primarily home to the city’s central business district and municipal offices, the Old City and Gay Street are mixed residential and commercial areas.
South Knoxville consists of the parts of the city located south of the river, and includes the neighborhoods of Vestal, Lindbergh Forest, Island Home Park, Colonial Hills, and Old Sevier. This area contains major commercial corridors along Chapman Highway and Alcoa Highway.
West Knoxville generally consists of the areas west of U.T., and includes the neighborhoods of Sequoyah Hills, West Hills, Bearden, Cumberland Estates, Westmoreland, Suburban Hills, Cedar Bluff, Rocky Hill, and Ebenezer. This area, concentrated largely around Kingston Pike, is home to thriving retail centers such as West Town Mall.
East Knoxville consists of the areas east of First Creek and the James White Parkway, and includes the neighborhoods of Parkridge, Burlington, Morningside, and Five Points. This area, concentrated along Magnolia Avenue, is home to Chilhowee Park and Zoo Knoxville.
North Knoxville consists of the areas north of Sharp’s Ridge, namely the Fountain City and Inskip-Norwood areas. This area’s major commercial corridor is located along Broadway.
As of 2011, the median price for a home in the Knoxville MSA was $140,900, compared with $173,300 nationally. The average apartment rental was $658 per month. In March 2009, CNN ranked Knoxville as the 59th city in the top 100 US metro areas in terms of real estate price depreciation.
The Knoxville area is home to 596 office buildings which contain over 21 million square feet of office space. As of 2010, the average rental rate per square foot was $14.79. The city’s largest office building in terms of office space is the City-County Building, which has over 537,000 square feet of office space. The First Tennessee Plaza and the Riverview Tower were the largest privately owned office buildings, with 469,672 square feet and 367,000 square feet, respectively.
Knoxville’s largest industrial park is the 1,460-acre (590 ha) Forks of the River Industrial Park in southeastern Knoxville. Other major industrial parks include the 800-acre (320 ha) EastBridge Industrial Park in eastern Knox County and the 271-acre (110 ha) WestBridge Industrial Park in western Knox County.
The largest bank operating in Knoxville in terms of local deposits is Memphis-based First Tennessee, with $2.6 billion in local deposits, representing about 16% of Knoxville’s banking market. It is followed by Charlotte-based Truist Financial ($2.5 billion), Birmingham-based Regions Bank ($1.9 billion), and locally headquartered Home Federal Bank of Tennessee ($1.6 billion).[Other banks with significant operations in the city include Bank of America, First Bank (based in Lexington, Tennessee), and locally owned Clayton Bank and Trust.
Major brokerage firms with offices in Knoxville include Edward Jones, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, Wells Fargo, and Merrill Lynch. As of 2011, Knox County’s largest mortgage lender (by dollar volume) was Wells Fargo with over $300 million (13% of the local market), followed by Mortgage Investors Group, SunTrust, Regions, and Home Federal. Knoxville’s largest accounting firm as of 2012 is Pershing Yoakley & Associates, with 49 local CPAs, followed by Coulter & Justus (44), and Pugh CPA’s(43).
Courtesy of Wikipedia