MOUNTAIN CITY, Tenn. — The Doe Mountain Recreation Authority announced Jan. 14 that its Doe Mountain Recreation Area is part of a new Adventure Tourism District created by the State of Tennessee in Johnson County.
The district was approved by Tennessee Department of Tourist Development Commissioner Mark Ezell and will encompass the entire area bordered by Tennessee state highways 67, 167 and U.S. 421. The designation became effective on Jan. 6.
“Adventure tourism is an industry gaining popularity throughout the world, and it is only fitting that Tennessee’s abundance of natural resources would lend the ideal setting to support this segment of the tourism industry,” Johnson County (Tenn.) commissioner Mark Ezell stated. “In addition to the business-friendly advantages our state offers, we are proud to showcase Tennessee’s innate geographical strengths in a way that will help generate job opportunities throughout the state.”
Located west/southwest of Mountain City in Johnson County, Doe Mountain Recreation Area consists of more than 8,600 acres of ATV, mountain biking and hiking trails that can be accessed by permit. Doe Mountain is open year round and has an adventure center at the entrance to the park. The recreation area has been managed by the state of Tennessee since the early 2010s after being privately owned for generations. The Doe Mountain Recreation Authority and its 15-member board of directors manages the area and seeks to expand recreational opportunities.
According to Johnson County (Tenn.) officials, qualified businesses locating in the district may apply for and earn a jobs tax credit to offset a portion of the business’ Tennessee franchise and excise tax liability.
“Qualified businesses may include restaurants, hotels or other tourism-related attractions making a capital investment of at least $500,000 and creating 10 full-time jobs with certain minimum health benefits,” Johnson County (Tenn.) said in a statement. “Under the statute, two part-time jobs may equal one full-time position.”
According to the Doe Mountain Recreation Authority, it is hoped the business incentives available in the new adventure tourism district will advance economic development in Johnson County, capitalizing on growing tourist traffic across the region.