Sectors and Sector Plans

What are Sectors and Sector Plans?

A sector is a geographical portion of Knox County defined for planning purposes. The Knoxville and Knox County area is divided into twelve sectors. A sector is not defined by the City Limits, so it can contain both City and County areas.

The Planning staff prepares a background report about the sector containing basic planning information about environmental resources, land use, population, transportation, community facilities, and utilities. With public input, the Planning staff drafts a conceptual 15-Year Plan that includes goals, policies and proposals to guide the sector's growth. The focus of the Plan is physical development; consequently, land use, transportation and community facilities are its key elements.

The adopted plan will be used on a month to month basis by the Planning Commission as the guide to zoning and subdivision decisions. A five-year improvement program will also be prepared, outlining projects to improve roads, parks, schools, and other facilities.

Land Use Classifications

In 2007, Planning developed a standard land use classification table to use in all 12 sectors. The table includes descriptions, location criteria, and recommended zoning for each proposed land use classification.

The districts described at the link below are used by the Planning Commission, City Council and County Commission for decision making with regard to development and land use (including rezonings and plan amendments)

View all classifications

How can I participate in a Sector Plan?

Public participation is necessary for any planning process, but it is especially important for sector plans, because Planning staff makes decisions based on these plans every month. Citizens, business owners, employers and employees in the sector should participate. Planning reaches out to the public in multiple ways in preparing a plan. It is important that all citizens, who want to express their concerns or views in identifying issues and in creating and reviewing the proposed plan, have means to do so. The participation methods may include:

  • surveys, including both hard copy and on-line surveys
  • workshops with small group discussions
  • community association meetings
  • public meetings in the community
  • Planning Commission, City Council and County Commission public hearings

Press releases about the Sector Plan and the public meetings are sent to local media throughout the process. Mailings and e-mailings to community and business association leaders, and information is posted on the Planning web site:

How is a Sector Plan adopted?

The completed Sector Plan is presented to the Planning Commission in final draft form. After approval by the Planning Commission, the Sector Plan is presented to City Council and County Commission for adoption.
Questions about sector plans can be directed to Planning Services staff, 215-2500