New Church Circle nearing completion

Matthew Lane • Oct 23, 2017 at 9:00 PM

KINGSPORT — Church Circle has now been transformed for the next generation.

If you've driven by Church Circle the past few weeks, you've undoubtedly noticed construction taking place. Today, you'll notice the tree has been planted and all of the work is virtually done.

David Mason, the project manager with the city, said GRC Construction still needs to patch the asphalt where the new curb line is and a little bit more landscaping needs to be done. Weather permitting, the project should wrap up by Wednesday.

Total cost was approximately $172,500.

“I think it’s beautiful. It's stunning,” said Beverley Perdue, a member of the Downtown Kingsport Association, which spearheaded the project.

What's new?

The new circle is larger than the old one — 50 feet compared to 65 feet — and consists of two parts: a center section for the new tree and an outer section with a regular planter-type bed. The circle is much taller than the old one too, about 4 feet tall on one side and 2 feet tall on the high side.

To blend in with the churches surrounding Church Circle, the new circle boasts a granite curb of two-toned red brick with pre-cast stone at the bottom. LED lights shine down on the walls, and lights in the upper planter shine up on the tree.

And at the center of it all is a new Black Hills spruce tree standing roughly 18 feet tall.

Will it get bigger?

Perdue said the tree was bound up and now that it has been planted, the limbs will begin to spread out some. It isn't a full-grown tree and will eventually grow to more than 30 feet tall within three to five years.

“I wish it had been a little big bigger, but it's got a great shape, great height and I think it'll be beautiful. And the lights are gorgeous,” Perdue said, noting that the previous tree, which was planted in the late 90s, was also not the size some people thought it would be.