Parked Property 

In the wake of yet another $1 billion Metro Budget, the Beaman family has learned that the city hasn’t provided the funding to open Beaman Park, to be sited on land donated by the family.

In December of 1995, Sally Beaman provided $650,000 for Metro to buy a 1,500-acre tract of virgin land near Joelton for a public greenway. The matriarch of the prominent Beaman family stipulated that the land be maintained as a park for at least 99 years. She also required that the park be named for her deceased husband Alvin Beaman, who founded Beaman Automotive and Beaman Bottling Co., and also served on the old city parks board from 1955-1963. Once it agreed to meet those two conditions, the city had a big chunk of land in its possession.

But the city hasn’t exactly rushed to make use of the property. Three-and-a-half years after one of the most sizable civic donations in Nashville history, Metro hasn’t appropriated the $1 million to $2 million needed to fund the opening of the park. According to mayoral staffers, this year’s budget was squeezed by lower-than-expected sales tax revenues. For now, there’s no official timetable for when the park will be ready.

“It’s frustrating,” says Lee Beaman, son of Alvin and Sally. “The sooner they put the money in the budget, the sooner people can enjoy it. I know Metro Government has a lot of priorities, but the land is already there, and the investment is already there. It’s a shame we can’t spend a little more money to utilize the land.”

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