Vendors banned from busiest areas of downtown Nashville

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Soon the sidewalks on and around Broadway will look very different.

On July 11, Metro’s traffic and parking commission voted to ban vendors from many major streets.

Last month, Mayor Cooper wrote a letter asking the Traffic and Parking Commission to ban vendors from some of the city’s busiest sidewalks. At their last meeting, the committee voted 4 to 2 to do so.

It’s a metric that some vendors say doesn’t seem fair.

“We’ve tried to employ as many people as possible to help small businesses and jobs and positively impact the economy here downtown, and that’s a direct hit, and we feel openly under attack.” , John Newman, owner of the TN Greenhouse, said.

The mayor said vendors disrupt traffic flow and pose safety risks, which is why restrictions are needed.

Newman said small business owners won’t give up without a fight.

“Mayor, his basis on this ban doesn’t make sense. As you can see, we have a perfect right of way for any pedestrian. We’re in our section that we can have as a permanent seller, and we paid all our dues and insurance, so we’re going to attack this any way we can,” he said.

As for tourists, some said they would like to see the vendors stay because they are convenient and affordable.

“Some of these places are very crowded and you can’t get in, or they’re really noisy. I like the little things around,” said tourist Paige Griffin.

Demetrius Stewart came to Nashville to celebrate her birthday and said buying items from vendors helped her save money.

“We already spend a lot of money to find accommodation, with all our extracurricular activities, going to bars, partying all night. So why not give us something a little cheaper, but we help still other people out there, small businesses?” Stewart said.

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