Mt. Juliet will spend approximately $165,000 from its hotel/motel tax fund to pay the majority of the cost to build its signature clock tower at the intersection of East Division Street and North Mt. Juliet Rd, Mayor Ed Hagerty said.
According to Hagerty, the hotel/motel tax brought in almost $800,000 last year. He said city commissioners passed a budget amendment several months ago to authorize the payment.
“The account holds more than $2 million,” he said. “So, the $165,000 is taken from that account.”
Hagerty said the clock tower payment is a one-time expenditure. The project is expected to cost approximately $250,000. Merritt Construction was the winning bidder.
A donor gave $250,000 to the city to build the clock tower a few years ago. All but $85,000 of that money was used to construct Robinson Park, City Manager Kenny Martin said.
“The clock tower was the original intended plan for the $250,000 donation, but, after being blessed with the 12-acre land donation by the Robinson family and the not-yet-approved location for the clock tower, the city decided to proceed with Robinson Park first since it was ready to go. We had not yet received permission to build the clock tower on the RTA federal government (WeGo train station) property,” Martin said.
“The donor fully supported this decision. Anytime federal and state property/monies are involved there are certain approvals that have to be acquired until a project can be approved and ultimately constructed. … The clock tower will be a wonderful addition to our great community.”
Mt. Juliet city officials helped to break ground on the site last week.
The project is called the Mt. Juliet Signature Piece Tower. The planned brick and stone clock tower will reach nearly 40 feet. The project also includes a paver patio, flag pole and benches.
Martin said that planners studied various design ideas and noted the city of Lebanon refurbished its clock tower.