Town slogan ‘Live Closer. Go Further’ dumped at BOMA retreat

After analyzing residents’ responses from a recent survey and public meetings, Farragut Board of Mayor and Aldermen has returned to the drawing board and decided to do away with its tagline, “Live Closer. Go Further.”

Originally, the vision statement read, “Farragut — a home, a destination, a connected community that lives closer and goes further.”

During the Board’s strategic planning retreat, held in Turkey Creek Medical Center Saturday, Sept. 16, Board members revisited residents’ reactions to the tag line and changed the vision to “Redefining a quality of life with a beautiful, close-knit, connected community where families and businesses thrive.”

The Board also changed its mission and values statement, which originally read, “Farragut — an appealing and engaged community set apart by a dedicated team committed to honesty, innovation and friendly service.” They replaced “honesty” with “integrity.”

Julia Novak, president of the Novak Consulting Group, which was hired to help the Town on its strategic plan, said 47.7 percent of residents who responded said they did not like or understand the tag line.

“I was surprised to have people who didn’t understand the logo,” Vice Mayor Ron Pinchok said. “I think [the logo] needs to be revisited.”

Likewise, Alderman Louise Povlin said she was surprised by the number of residents who were not behind the logo.

“I think, in an effort to make it all inclusive and expansive, maybe we went a step too far,” Povlin said. “The residents aren’t getting it. People don’t understand it. What are we trying to say? To me, it’s a close-knit, connected community.”

“A lot of people don’t understand what closer means … closer to Knoxville, closer to what?” Pinchok said. “It seems [it’s] all those things.”

“It seems to me that most people like the actual logo. It’s the tag line,” Sue Stuhl, Farragut Parks and Leisure Services director, said. “And, the logo is what we spent most of the money on.”

“So you could lose ‘Live Closer. Go Further?’” Novak asked.

“Easily,” Stuhl answered.

Concerning the Town’s strategic plan, Povlin said the residents’ reactions “verified what I thought was going on. It’s great to see the feedback, and I’m glad to see most of the people were kind of on the same wavelength for the most part.”

“I’m excited about the responses,” Pinchok said. “Ninety-five percent were positive.”

“A high majority of the Town has the same vision,” Alderman Ron Williams said.

Povlin added she was encouraged residents were “on board” with the Town Center concept.

“People are excited about it,” she said.

Williams said what he gained from residents responses is they want more community activities on a more regular basis.

Also, Pinchok said residents “feel they are living in a safe community but want more of a police presence.”

Besides the statements, the Board came up with a number of initiatives:

• “Establish a dedicated funding mechanism [possibly a hotel tax] for tourism, marketing and capital infrastructure investment.

• “Establish a youth council.

• “Expand opportunities to implement best practices for traffic calming.

• “Hire a tourism coordinator to implement the Town’s marketing plan.

• “Develop a detailed implementation plan for each phase of McFee Park development.

• “Stabilize Campbell Station Inn and develop a plaza and road infrastructure.

• “Identify and prioritize the trail/sidewalk connectors that are needed to be a fully connected community.

• “Assess the Town’s stormwater infrastructure needs.

• “Develop a workplace culture initiative.

• “Develop a strategy to create a unique “downtown” for Farragut.

• Explore opportunities for development north of the Interstate” and

• “Address the advance of online retail and how to prosper in a changing environment and look at zoning ordinances to ensure sales tax-generating retail is encouraged.”