Sherman Reservation comprises 50 of the 9,000 acres of the Chickamauga Chattanooga National Park (CHCH NMP). It has national Civil War significance due the events associated with Battles for Chattanooga in November, 1863. While Sherman Reservation has potential for quality visitor experiences, a 2014 study showed that most visitors are unaware of opportunities to visit, and even fewer of the nearly 1 million annual visitors to this national park find their way to Sherman Reservation. We believe much of this is due to physical barriers and lack of signage. We need to change this.
CHCH NMP's neighbor is historic Glass Street. This diverse, economically challenged urban area is one of Chattanooga’s poorest neighborhoods and has a lack of green space. Recognizing this, the Trust for Public Land recently acquired 35 undeveloped acres located between the Glass Street community’s “Main Street” commerical corridor and the Sherman Reservation. We need to physically and emotionally connect these two entities to provide youth a quality local outdoor facility, engage youth to connect with their National Park, and reduce barriers to give the public more reason to be outdoors and visit Sherman Reservation.
The Phase I aims of this project are to:
• Commission Southeast Conservation Corp local youth work crews to construct a new 2 foot wide, 1.5 mile long walking trail to use for both recreation and to increase access to Sherman Reservation.
• Develop a wayfinding brand and associated signage to recognize historical events, preserve local culture and provide ease of access.
• Celebrate the 2016 National Park Centennial at Sherman Reservation through collaborative efforts to show youth how Sherman Reservation can help them “Find Your Park”
• Engage diverse people of varying ethnicities and ages to be a part of this project as both change agents and users as part of a public health improvement effort.
All of the partners look forward to making our home more inviting.