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Old 02-13-2009, 01:50 PM
 
9 posts, read 17,082 times
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I posted a few days ago about the practicality of moving to W. Knoxville if I am going to be working in Spring City, as opposed to living in one of the small towns on the way, possibly on 75 or 27. I am relocating to Tenn from Baltimore, Md. in roughly two weeks. I got some excellent feedback from Piedmont, JMT, and others. Studied the map, googled just about every town between Knox. and Spring City for info, and talked to a few others in my company who are currently working in Spring City. I ws particularly intrigued by Rockwood and Kingston. Both just 15-20 miles from Spring City, about 30 or so miles from Knox. Found the Rockwood website, and managed to make contact with city official there who was wonderful. She gave me lots of info on Rockwood, and referred me to Roane County real estate agent who is going to give me some rental suggestions. Rockwood official even told me to call her with any questions. I have since found the Roane County newspaper with rental listings...rentals appear reasonably priced.

Anyone out there with firsthand knowledge of Rockwood? I know it's fairly small, not a metropolis, and probably quiet. But during the week I will be workin ten hour days anyway, and can save the fun for weekends. I'm single, not a big partier, and don't need a lot of excitement. Is it as nice a place to live as it sounds? And what about thebig ash spill in Harriman? Is there any reason to be concerned about the air or water quality in Roane County?

Any and all insights are welcomed. Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-13-2009, 03:46 PM
 
Location: Knoxville
4,236 posts, read 20,704,217 times
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You need to just drive around some of these towns and look for yourself.
I have been in Rockwood a few times inspecting houses, and it just doesn't strike me as a very exciting place, or interesting -but then, that's just me.

You do really need to take the time to look for yourself to see what these places are like, and if they will fit your needs.
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Old 02-13-2009, 04:09 PM
 
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I'm with Barking Spider.

Rockwood is a little town that has seen better days. It's in a beeeautiful setting, however. The area Wal-Mart is there in Rockwood.

Harriman probably has a nicer downtown area than Rockwood, but not by much.

I used to recommend Kingston because Kingston is right on the lake, but with the ash spill I'm not sure I'd recommend Kingston to anyone right now.

I don't think the ash spill has had much of an impact--if any--on Rockwood's water supply. But don't take my word for it.

If you don't mind driving 30 or so miles into Knoxville on weekends when you want a little more excitement, then you might just like living in Rockwood. It's certainly beautiful there, and the drive to Spring City will be quick and pleasant (and also beautiful).

Good luck!
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Old 02-13-2009, 04:43 PM
 
Location: Knoxville
1,155 posts, read 2,980,119 times
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Rockwood will put you closer to your Spring city work, and town is quite old, and not a lot of choices to see in the home market. All depends on your taste and if you want to purchase or rent. Good luck, and like jmt and spider have said, you just need to tour the area, and then make your decision.
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Old 02-13-2009, 08:39 PM
BRH
 
Location: East TN.
99 posts, read 308,134 times
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I agree with everyone. You would really just have to come down for a weekend and take a look in person to see if Roane County suits you or not. There really isn't a whole lot of differences in the three towns (Rockwood, Kingston, and Harriman), and as I said in my e-mail, they really all share most of their businesses, and are close in proximity to one another.

Personally, I prefer Harriman out of the three. But this is because I like older, historic type homes, and Harriman is home to the wonderful Cornstalk Heights neighborhood. (Cornstalk Heights - About Us¬*¬*). But, with that being said, the actual downtown area of Harriman is kind of old and run down looking. Rockwood is kind of similar. Kingston is a bit newer and has more new construction and more activites along the Watts Bar Lake waterfront. That's why I thought you might like it and I mentioned that there might be some apartments or condos in the lakefront area.

But really, if you are looking for an average, nice small town feel, and close proximity to Spring City, any of the three would be good choices and pretty much equal. If I were you, I would come down for a weekend and maybe stay in a hotel in west Knoxville and explore the whole area between there and your work. You'll really have a better feel then for what area you feel most comfortable in. Good luck.

(Oh, and as far as the ash spill goes, I really don't think it will be a major problem. They report it on the news as being in Harriman, but I really think it's closer to Kingston actually. Either way, I think it's mainly a problem for people who lived in the immediate area and were directly affected by the spill. I don't think there is that great of danger to the water supply or anything. Although property values are gonna' plummet because of all the media hype that seems never ending).
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Old 02-14-2009, 08:18 AM
 
Location: Eastern TN
404 posts, read 1,322,187 times
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IMO, Rockwood looks the "roughest" of the three towns. It is right on the railroad tracks, but also looking up to Mt. Roosevelt, which is part of the Cumberland Escarpment (very beautiful!). Harriman is the largest, with an interesting old downtown. Kingston has the potential to be the most charming (note: I said potential), as it is right on the lake. There is a nice running/walking trail along the lake. All are easily reached from I-40. Rockwood has a Super Walmart; Harriman/Midtown has a Lowe's and Kroger (plus more other basic shops like auto supplies); Kingston has Food City (good regional grocery chain) and Ace Hardware, plus a few other basics. FWIW, I go to Kingston and Harriman all the time, but rarely head out to Rockwood, as it is less convenient and just doesn't offer much.

The ash spill had a profound effect on the Swan Pond community, which is in between Kingston and Harriman. There are serious air and water quality issues. Swan Pond area is not visually obvious from either town, but you will want to pay attention to water sources and consider testing your well water if you are within a few miles of Swan Pond area. On the lake itself, the word is that the cennospheres which have drifted downstream from the site are inert (and are being vacuumed up and used for concrete production). Given that I live well downstream of Kingston, I am glad to hear this, but I am also keeping track of the sources producing this conclusion! Much of Harriman is well west of the spill and much of Kingston is well east. Rockwood is farther away to the west (closer to Spring City). I'm not going to tell you anything is safer than anything else, as TN has a long and complex environmental history (between TVA and ORNL especially). You might appreciate browsing some local blogs like RoaneViews | Progressive Roane County news, opinion, and more or Jan 23 Update from United Mountain Defense at TVA's Coal Ash Disaster (http://knoxville.craigslist.org/vol/1005387431.html - broken link) for some other perspectives.
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Old 02-14-2009, 10:55 AM
 
5 posts, read 12,730 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BRH View Post
I agree with everyone. You would really just have to come down for a weekend and take a look in person to see if Roane County suits you or not. There really isn't a whole lot of differences in the three towns (Rockwood, Kingston, and Harriman), and as I said in my e-mail, they really all share most of their businesses, and are close in proximity to one another.
I disagree.

Rockwood is spread out and seems like a fading strip mall to me. The WallyWorld there is depressing in its own right (more so than the average WW).

Downtown Harriman looks like it has more businesses closed than open.

Kingston is cute, vibrant, compact, directly on the lake, and has far better shopping (large bright new Food City; nearby Kroger and Lowes, both new and technically in Harriman; two full size hardware stores, one with a full service copy/pack/ship center inside; and a new RiteAide).
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Old 02-14-2009, 03:22 PM
 
11,857 posts, read 32,837,105 times
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Here are the 2007 population estimates for Roane County's 3 towns:

Harriman
6,668 (down from 7,119 in 2000)

Kingston
5,524 (up from 4,552 in 2000)

Rockwood
5,559 (up from 5,348 in 2000)


I have to admit I'm surprised that Rockwood has gained population while Harriman has lost population. I agree with those who have said that Rockwood looks the roughest and like a "fading strip mall" (I love that description).

Roane County as a whole has not enjoyed much growth. Since 2000 its population has gone from 47,227 to only 53,399 in 2007. I suspect that as Knoxville's population continues to creep westward Roane County will start to grow again, and Kingston seems to be in the best position to see its population grow.

I guess what I'm saying is, if I were to move to Roane County but were concerned about having to sell my home again in a few years, I'd probably want to move to Kingston.
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Old 02-14-2009, 03:34 PM
 
Location: Knoxville, TN
2,172 posts, read 6,876,770 times
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I'd rent cheap in Rockwood for the short commute and then rent a room in downtown Knoxville for the weekends. Check Metropulse or Craigslist for folks looking for roommates. You can probably find a furnished bedroom walking distance to downtown for the weekends for a very reasonable sum.
It would keep commuting costs down and give you a chance to enjoy Knoxville's lively downtown scene without having to drive.
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Old 02-15-2009, 09:40 PM
BRH
 
Location: East TN.
99 posts, read 308,134 times
Reputation: 82
Too bad you can't move the historic Cornstalk Heights area from Harriman to the lakefront in Kingston (then that would be perfect )

I agree with everyone, that Kingston is probably the nicest of the three (and is cleanest, and set for the biggest future growth, and best re-sale value). I still kind of lean towards Harriman personally though, because I really like the old homes in Cornstalk Heights. But as I said, the downtown area of Harriman is pretty rundown and depressing looking. (though Rockwood, is probably a bit worse).
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