2010: 178,874, #130 in U.S., #3 in Tennessee

1950: 124,769, #84 in U.S.

2010 Metropolitan Area: 698,030, #75 in U.S.

1950 Metropolitan Area: 337,105, #55 in U.S.


Knoxville, on the Tennessee River, was first settled in 1786. Today, Knoxville has a Riverwalk and riverboat cruises. Volunteer Landing Park is located along the river. The University of Tennessee is on the west side of downtown.


Tallest building: First Tennessee Plaza, 327 feet (1979)

List of tallest buildings

The Sunsphere Tower (266 feet), which was built for the 1982 World’s Fair, has an observation deck.


Knoxville has no downtown department stores.


Amtrak has no service to Knoxville. The Three Rivers Rambler is an excursion train that runs along the Tennessee River, starting downtown. 


The Knoxville Museum of Art and the East Tennessee History Center are downtown. The McClung Museum is nearby on the University of Tennessee campus.

Downtown Knoxville
(Photo by Nathan Fortner)


The Regal Riviera Stadium 8 is a first-run movie theater. The Tennessee Theatre (1928) is a restored movie palace that has touring Broadway shows, old movies, and regular performances by the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra and Knoxville Opera.

The smaller Bijou Theatre (1909) is used for concerts. Theatre Knoxville Downtown is also downtown.


The Tennessee Smokies, Double-A Southern League affiliate of the Chicago Cubs, play at Smokies Park (2000) in the town of Kodak, about 20 miles east of Knoxville. The Thompson-Boling Arena (1987) on the University of Tennessee campus has sporting events and concerts. The Knoxville Civic Auditorium and Coliseum (1961) also hosts sporting events and concerts.

Map of Downtown Knoxville

Visit Knoxville