JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) – Plans to develop the Boones Creek area have been put on hold, at least for the Promenade project.

Steve Weston, the developer, has been working on this proposal for nearly two years. On Monday, he told News Channel 11 that due to recent events, it’s likely not happening.

Weston and his team have the 70-acre property near the intersection of Boones Creek Road and Christian Church Road under contract with various contingencies. Over the past year, they’ve run feasibility studies for the area, as well as going through stormwater, environmental and architectural aspects of the project.

There’s no doubt this project has taken a lot of time, effort and money, but all that could be for nothing. According to Weston, a strip of land that sits between Boones Creek Road and their proposed 70 acres is the problem.

“We have 70 beautiful acres but how do you get there? How do you get in and out? How do you see it in terms of anchor tenants? It would be impossible without their cooperation,” said Weston.

He said tenants were lined up and ready to go but all agreed they needed visibility and access to the property from Boones Creek Road in order to sign on. As of right now, the only access point to that land would be Christian Church Road, all because they can’t make a deal on that strip of land.

“We did not get the cooperation we hoped for from the party that owns that land,” Weston said. “For whatever reason, they don’t want to work with us or anybody and they do not want to develop their property. We tried to buy that too, that was not something that was an option.”

There is a legislative incentive for development in the Boones Creek area and he said he would’ve met the criteria, but not without those crucial anchor tenants.

“I’ll always be enthusiastic about it, and I’ll always hope that somehow, someway it will be brought back in the fold and we can get back on track with it, but right now it sure doesn’t look that way,” said Weston.

City leaders told News Channel 11 they’re hopeful something gets approved but worry that the current state of the economy, especially the rising costs of building supplies, will discourage others.

“On our end, what we’re doing is continuing to plan for it and be ready for it, not knowing what the private sector is going to do,” said Cathy Ball, the City Manager of Johnson City.

When asked if this meant he would look for another plot of land in this area, Weston said it’s just not in the cards right now.

Weston said this project is over unless the adjoining property owners have a change of heart. He said he assumed they would work with them on this and allow them to obtain and maintain that piece of the property, but they refuse. He said the property has apparently been in the family for generations.

News Channel 11 also reached out to Mark Larkey, the developers of another property in the Boones Creek area for a status update but has yet to hear back about their plans or progress.