Nice Smoky Mountains Parks tenting, parking will value extra

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GATLINBURG, Tenn. (WTVF) – The Great Smoky Mountains National Park announced its intention to begin collecting park fees and increasing rates for camping facilities, including campgrounds, day cabin rentals and picnic pavilions. The changes would take effect next year.

According to the park, visitor numbers have increased by 57% over the past decade and have taken a toll on the facilities. Adding a daily parking permit for just $5 could make a world of difference.

Additional revenue from the proposed changes would allow the park to address renovations, law enforcement staffing issues, and services such as trail maintenance and garbage disposal.

The park is seeking public comment through May 7 and has scheduled a virtual public meeting for April 14 to discuss the proposals.

For more information and further explanation, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park has detailed its proposal on its website.