TVA Renews Goals for Quality Recreation Facilities in Houston, Stewart Counties
December 28, 2011
HOUSTON COUNTY, Tenn. – As a contributor to outdoor recreation opportunities across Houston and Stewart counties, the Tennessee Valley Authority is renewing its goal of ensuring that facilities on TVA-managed public lands are safe, properly accessible to visitors, and offer a quality experience.
As part of its service to the public, TVA is evaluating commercial recreation facilities operating on TVA property to identify any issues that might compromise visitor safety or the environment, verify spaces meant for short-term stays are not being used as permanent residences and that facilities are operating within their assigned boundaries.
“As part of our recently adopted Natural Resource Plan, TVA is focusing on healthy public lands that provide appropriate access for recreational activities,” said Bruce Schofield, vice president of Land and Shoreline Management. “The concept of public lands is that everyone has the same opportunity to enjoy a quality outing. I think most visitors agree that having individuals building or living in permanent residences in a public campground violates that spirit.”
Schofield said TVA’s goal is for each visitor to TVA lands choosing to enjoy TVA public lands to have a positive experience, while also respecting the environment around them.
“Almost from its inception, TVA has encouraged and supported a wide variety of responsible outdoor recreation,” said Schofield. “Our commercial operators are valuable partners in providing recreation access. But, as stewards of natural resources, they also share the responsibility to protect or enhance public lands.”
TVA, working with other entities, offers public recreation access on 245 acres of TVA-managed land in Houston County and 51 acres in Stewart County. In total, TVA manages 293,000 acres and 11,000 miles of shoreline across the Tennessee Valley for the greatest public benefit. These lands and waters contribute to regional economies by drawing in millions of visitors annually.
In addition to directly managing public lands, TVA leases property to commercial operators for recreational facilities such as campgrounds and marinas.
“Whether TVA directly operates a recreational facility or leases space to a commercial entity, we want the recreation area to be a safe place that people are proud to take their family members,” said Anda Ray, senior vice president of TVA Environment & Technology. “In the coming months, we will be contacting marina and campground operators located on TVA-managed land to ensure they are offering a safe and superior recreational experience and are in compliance with their operating agreements.”
As part of TVA’s mission to provide recreation opportunities across the Tennessee Valley region, TVA directly operates 80 public recreation areas, including campgrounds, day-use areas and boat ramps. Information on TVA’s recreation focus and facilities can be found at http://tva.com/river/recreation.
Historically, TVA also has provided land it acquired to local, state and federal agencies for public access, such as Houston County’s Danville Landing and Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency’s White Oak Creek boat ramp.
The Tennessee Valley Authority, a corporation owned by the U.S. government, provides electricity for 9 million people in parts of seven southeastern states at prices below the national average. TVA, which receives no taxpayer money and makes no profits, also provides flood control, navigation and land management for the Tennessee River system and assists utilities and state and local governments with economic development.
Barbara Martocci, Knoxville, (865) 632-8632
Media Relations, Knoxville (865) 632-6000