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Frame The Importance of

Commercial Truck Insurance in Nashville, TN

  • Let's face it - truckers in America have always been the backbone of our great country. They still are in modern times. On any given day, thousands of trucks traverse our highways and local roads, delivering goods and products on time so that businesses and consumers have what they need to live life. And while commercial trucking can be an incredibly lucrative way to make a living and put food on the table, it can also be risky and expensive.
  • Whether you're the owner of a fleet, an independent trucker, or have a business that uses big rigs to transport goods, you need commercial trucking insurance to protect you and your client's investments, shield you from liability, and more.
  • That's where working with a reliable truck insurance agency comes into play. Unfortunately, for many commercial truck insurance providers, serving the needs of truckers is low on the proverbial totem pole. At Independence Insurance Agency, nothing could be further from the truth.

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percent The Commercial Truck

Insurance Agency in Nashville, TN You Can Trust

Much like you pride yourself on running a successful trucking business, Independence Insurance Agency prides itself on its years of experience providing truck insurance for hardworking men and women across the country. And in our experience, insurance rates for truckers are just too high - so high, in fact, that they eat away at their bottom line, making it more difficult to run a business and make a profit. Fortunately, at Independence Insurance Agency, we provide truckers the freedom they need from astronomically high insurance rates so they can stay on the road and keep driving America forward.

As one of the most trusted commercial trucking insurance agencies in the U.S., we understand the challenges that you face daily as a trucker. We also know how important it is to protect your business. That's why we go above and beyond to find you the best-priced coverage available, whether you're an operator, own a small fleet, a large fleet, or something in between.

Commercial Truck Insurance Nashville, TN

We Put Truckers First Because Others Don't

 Truck Insurance Nashville, TN

Truckers across the country choose to work with Independence Insurance Agency because we put their needs first before anything else. As experts in transportation insurance, we proudly offer a range of quality insurance products that are both practical and affordable for them. Our industry-leading carriers provide coverage that caters to the unique challenges faced by the trucking industry, ensuring that your business is protected at all times.

At our core, we are committed to finding the best possible price for your coverage without compromising the quality of service you deserve. The truth is, we understand how essential truckers are to the United States and take pride in making their insurance experience more streamlined and affordable.

One way we do so is by simplifying the insurance process. Our transportation specialists take the time to understand your specific needs and budget to tailor a comprehensive plan that works for you. You won't ever have to worry about cookie-cutter plans or uninterested agents when you work with our commercial trucking insurance agency. We take an educational approach to ensure that the entire big rig insurance process is quick, painless, and easy to understand. If there's something you don't understand, we're happy to take the time to explain. After all, the success and safety of your business are on the line.

Looking to the future, we are committed to providing innovative new products that cater to the ever-changing needs of truck drivers. As your one-stop shop for commercial trucking insurance, we are dedicated to your success, one policy at a time.

If you're a commercial trucker looking to ensure your rig, you can rest easy knowing that Independence Insurance Agency provides:

  • Affordable Trucking Insurance Plans for Any Budget
  • Exemplary Customer Service
  • Seasoned Transportation Specialists Who Customize Plans to Your Needs
  • A+ Carriers Across the Country
  • Simple, Easy Quote and Bind Process
  • Multiple Insurance Carriers Quoted to Find You the Best Rates
  • Truck Insurance for New Ventures

Call us or send us a message today to learn more about the best 18-wheeler insurance options for your trucking business.

chart The Commercial Truck

Common Types of Big Rig Truck Insurance in Nashville, TN

At Independence Insurance Agency, we offer several types of insurance coverage for local, intermediate, and long-haul trucking needs. Here are just a few categories of trucking insurance coverage that our agency offers.

As the foundation of your insurance policy, liability coverage is required by law in most states in the U.S. It provides coverage for damage or injuries caused to properties or other people if your 18-wheeler is responsible for the crash. Without liability coverage, it's almost impossible to drive a truck or run a trucking business without major legal consequences.

Having physical damage coverage is an essential component that shouldn't be overlooked. This insurance is responsible for covering the expenses related to repairing or replacing your truck in situations such as accidents, theft, vandalism, and other damaging events. By having this coverage, you can rest assured that your business won't be affected significantly by unexpected incidents, and you can continue running your operations smoothly even in challenging times.

For trucking companies, the goods they transport are crucial to their operations. To protect these goods from damage, loss, or theft while in transit, cargo insurance is essential. This coverage provides much-needed peace of mind for both you and your clients, allowing you to reimburse clients for any losses sustained while protecting your reputation and brand identity.

Non-Trucking Liability Insurance is designed to cover property damage or bodily injury that may occur during personal time when the driver/truck is not under dispatch. This coverage can be applied with or without a trailer and is added to a commercial policy as an endorsement.

While Independence Insurance Agency has built a reputation of excellence in serving the needs of truckers, we also offer general liability. Also known as Truckers General Liability, this coverage insures for bodily injuries or property damage that happen due to business activities that are NOT the cause of operating a truck. It covers accidents that occur in parking lots, rest stops, also while loading or unloading. General liability can also cover losses related to theft and vandalism. Most brokers and shippers will require this coverage to work with you.

Bobtail insurance is a type of coverage that is comparable to non-trucking liability, which is designed to offer protection when driving a truck without a trailer attached. This is commonly referred to as "bobtailing." With bobtail insurance, the tractor is covered at all times, even when it is not attached to a trailer, regardless of whether or not the truck is under dispatch.

Trailer interchange insurance is a must-have if you're involved in a trailer interchange agreement. This essential coverage offers protection for trailers owned by other parties that you're using under a contractual agreement. It covers damages caused by collisions, fire, theft, and vandalism, providing assurance to all parties involved.

Curious whether our commercial truck insurance agency in cityname, state offers additional coverage? The following options can be bound in your insurance policy:

  • Business Interruption Insurance
  • Reefer Breakdown Insurance
  • Occupational Accident with Contract Liability Insurance
  • Rental Reimbursement Insurance
  • Underinsured or Uninsured Motorist Insurance
  • Towing Insurance
  • Electronics Insurance
  • Much More

Three plus 3 Safe Driving Tips to

Lower the Cost of Truck Insurance in Nashville, TN

Keeping your drivers safe on the road is crucial not only for their own well-being but also for the safety of other motorists and the financial stability of your business. The Department of Labor has identified the trucking industry as one of the most hazardous sectors in the U.S. In fact, trucking and logistics fleets are known for their high injury and fatality rates. By improving how safely your truckers drive, you can help reduce expenses related to claim payouts, accidents, and insurance premium hikes.

Whether you own a large fleet or you're the owner and operator of a single rig, keep these safe driving tips in mind to help lower your insurance costs.

Implement Preventative Maintenance Plans

Ensuring the safety of your drivers begins with the safety of their vehicles. Trucks and tractor-trailers that do not receive regular maintenance, such as oil and brake pad changes, are more likely to experience breakdowns while on the road. Telematics devices provide real-time insight into engine and odometer data, including fault codes.

This information enables your mechanics to create comprehensive preventative maintenance schedules based on mileage, history of previous breakdowns, days, and more. Additionally, they can receive immediate notifications for critical fault codes. By implementing routine maintenance and proactive repair schedules, you can ensure that your vehicles are in top condition, minimizing the likelihood of breakdowns, which can help reduce the cost of trucker insurance.

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 Trucking Insurance Nashville, TN

Practice Defensive Driving

This approach aims to mitigate the risk of fatal crashes and injuries by proactively identifying and responding to potentially dangerous situations and making informed decisions while driving. By adopting defensive driving techniques, drivers can reduce their likelihood of accidents, thereby minimizing the need for expensive repairs, claim payouts, and increased insurance premiums.

Some of the easiest ways for you or your drivers to practice safe driving include:

  • Be Wary of Blind Spots: Operating a reefer or tractor-trailer means driving high off of the ground, which can make visibility limited, especially in blind spots. To check your blind spot, look over your shoulder and out of your windows while changing lanes.
  • Be Ready for Emergencies on the Road: It's important for drivers to be ready for unexpected situations when driving, especially during long trips. They should be equipped to handle emergencies such as poor driving conditions or big rig breakdowns.
  • Use the Three-Second Rule: Truck drivers should try to maintain a three-second gap between their vehicle and the car in front of them. This means that the truck driver should reach a certain point on the road three seconds after the car in front of them has passed that same point.
  • Always Use Right and Left Turn Indicators: It's important for drivers to always use their turn signals when changing lanes or exiting highways, even if they don't see any other cars around. This is not only required by law, but it also reduces the chances of accidents occurring on the road.
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 Commercial Liability Insurance For Truckers Nashville, TN

Find Ways to Prevent Distracted Driving

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), distracted driving is the primary reason behind truck driver accidents. Any activity that takes a driver's attention away from the road or the steering wheel is considered distracted driving. Distractions can come in various forms, such as eating while driving or gazing at a billboard outside the window. However, the most frequent form of distracted driving is the use of cellphones, specifically texting while driving.

Assuming you or your driver's rigs are equipped with dual-facing cameras, try reviewing footage of an unsafe driving incident. Coach your drivers on ways to correct their unsafe behaviors or look up ways to do so yourself if you're the one operating the big rig. The bottom line is that when your drivers aren't distracted, they drive safer. And when they drive safer, the cost of 18-wheeler insurance in cityname, state can be reduced.

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 Commercial Truck Insurance Quote Nashville, TN

Ensuring the safety of your drivers begins with the safety of their vehicles. Trucks and tractor-trailers that do not receive regular maintenance, such as oil and brake pad changes, are more likely to experience breakdowns while on the road. Telematics devices provide real-time insight into engine and odometer data, including fault codes.

This information enables your mechanics to create comprehensive preventative maintenance schedules based on mileage, history of previous breakdowns, days, and more. Additionally, they can receive immediate notifications for critical fault codes. By implementing routine maintenance and proactive repair schedules, you can ensure that your vehicles are in top condition, minimizing the likelihood of breakdowns, which can help reduce the cost of trucker insurance.

 Low Priced Commercial Truck Insurance Nashville, TN phone Call Now

This approach aims to mitigate the risk of fatal crashes and injuries by proactively identifying and responding to potentially dangerous situations and making informed decisions while driving. By adopting defensive driving techniques, drivers can reduce their likelihood of accidents, thereby minimizing the need for expensive repairs, claim payouts, and increased insurance premiums.

Some of the easiest ways for you or your drivers to practice safe driving include:

  • Be Wary of Blind Spots: Operating a reefer or tractor-trailer means driving high off of the ground, which can make visibility limited, especially in blind spots. To check your blind spot, look over your shoulder and out of your windows while changing lanes.
  • Be Ready for Emergencies on the Road: It's important for drivers to be ready for unexpected situations when driving, especially during long trips. They should be equipped to handle emergencies such as poor driving conditions or big rig breakdowns.
  • Use the Three-Second Rule: Truck drivers should try to maintain a three-second gap between their vehicle and the car in front of them. This means that the truck driver should reach a certain point on the road three seconds after the car in front of them has passed that same point.
  • Always Use Right and Left Turn Indicators: It's important for drivers to always use their turn signals when changing lanes or exiting highways, even if they don't see any other cars around. This is not only required by law, but it also reduces the chances of accidents occurring on the road.
Commercial Truck Insurance Nashville, TN phone Call Now

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), distracted driving is the primary reason behind truck driver accidents. Any activity that takes a driver's attention away from the road or the steering wheel is considered distracted driving. Distractions can come in various forms, such as eating while driving or gazing at a billboard outside the window. However, the most frequent form of distracted driving is the use of cellphones, specifically texting while driving.

Assuming you or your driver's rigs are equipped with dual-facing cameras, try reviewing footage of an unsafe driving incident. Coach your drivers on ways to correct their unsafe behaviors or look up ways to do so yourself if you're the one operating the big rig. The bottom line is that when your drivers aren't distracted, they drive safer. And when they drive safer, the cost of 18-wheeler insurance in cityname, state can be reduced.

 Truck Insurance Nashville, TN phone Call Now

check light FAQs About

Independence Insurance Agency

If you're looking for a commercial trucking insurance agency for your business, chances are you have some questions - and we've got answers. Keep reading to learn more about some of the most commonly asked questions we hear from truckers like you.

Why go with a "jack of all trades" when you can work with specialists who focus exclusively on transportation insurance? We have excellent relationships with major trucking insurance carriers and, as such, can provide the best assistance and reasonable rates.

Typically, companies will look at claims that date back three years or less.

We proudly work with more than 20 carriers to provide our clients with the most advantageous options at competitive prices, catering to the needs of owner-operators and big fleets alike.

Permit filings are typically done by insurance companies on the next business day. Federal (FMCSA) filings are completed online and updated immediately, while some states may take up to three weeks to process.

Independence Insurance Agency: Committed to the Trucking Industry

There's no question about it - you've got to protect your staff, your rig, and your trucking business with insurance. But choosing the right insurance partner isn't always easy. Thankfully, with Independence Insurance Agency by your side, you can rest easy knowing you're covered no matter where the road takes you. If you're in need of a commercial truck insurance agency in Nashville, TN that caters to truckers like you, pick up the phone and contact one of our transportation specialists today. That way, you can get back on the road with confidence tomorrow.

 Trucking Insurance Nashville, TN

Latest News in Nashville, TN

Game Preview: Titans Travel to Miami for Monday Night Football

The Tennessee Titans (4-8) travel to South Florida this week for a Monday night showdown with the Miami Dolphins (9-3). Kickoff at Hard Rock Stadium (capacity 64,992) is scheduled for 8:15 p.m. EST/7:15 p.m. CST on Dec. 11.The two clubs have not met in a primetime game since the 2001 season opener on a Sunday night (Sept. 9), when the Dolphins visited Nissan Stadium and won by a final score of 31-23. The two prior Monday night games between the organizations took place in 1978 and 1979. The Oilers took both of those matchups....

The Tennessee Titans (4-8) travel to South Florida this week for a Monday night showdown with the Miami Dolphins (9-3). Kickoff at Hard Rock Stadium (capacity 64,992) is scheduled for 8:15 p.m. EST/7:15 p.m. CST on Dec. 11.

The two clubs have not met in a primetime game since the 2001 season opener on a Sunday night (Sept. 9), when the Dolphins visited Nissan Stadium and won by a final score of 31-23. The two prior Monday night games between the organizations took place in 1978 and 1979. The Oilers took both of those matchups.

THE BROADCAST

This week's game will be nationally televised on ESPN. In Nashville, fans also can watch on WTVF NewsChannel 5. The game will be streamed on ESPN+ and NFL+, which offers access to local games and all primetime games on phones and tablets. More information on ways to watch NFL games can be found here. The broadcast team for Monday night includes play-by-play announcer Chris Fowler, analysts Louis Riddick and Dan Orlovsky, and reporter Laura Rutledge.

The Titans Radio Network and Nashville flagship 104.5 The Zone carry all Titans games across the Mid-South with the "Voice of the Titans" Mike Keith, analyst Dave McGinnis, sideline reporter Ramon Foster and gameday host Rhett Bryan. Streaming is available at the Titans Mobile App for listeners in the Nashville market and available everywhere for desktop users.

Additionally, Westwood One Sports will broadcast the game to a national radio audience. Play-by-play announcer Tom McCarthy and analyst Brian Baldinger have the call.

*TITANS LOOKING TO REBOUND AFTER OVERTIME LOSS *

The Titans hosted the division-rival Indianapolis Colts last week and lost in overtime by a final score of 31-28. They marched down field for a go-ahead field goal in the extra period, but the Colts responded with a game-winning touchdown drive. It was the Titans' first defeat of the season at Nissan Stadium.

Running back Derrick Henry rushed for 102 yards and two touchdowns in the loss. It was his second consecutive game with a pair of rushing touchdowns. Approaching Monday night, he ranks second in the NFL this season with 841 rushing yards and sixth in the league with eight rushing touchdowns.

Rookie quarterback Will Levis started his sixth consecutive game and completed 16 of 33 passes for 224 yards with one touchdown. It was his third consecutive game without throwing an interception. On the season, he is 107-of-185 passing for 1,266 yards with seven touchdowns and two interceptions.

Levis' touchdown pass against the Colts was a three-yarder to DeAndre Hopkins, who improved his season totals to 50 receptions for 774 yards and five touchdowns. He leads the team in all three categories. Last week he also became the fifth NFL player to record 900 receptions (903), 12,000 receiving yards (12,072) and 75 receiving touchdowns (76) within his first 11 seasons. This week he can record his 158th consecutive game with a reception, which would tie Marshall Faulk for the third-longest streak in NFL history to begin a career, trailing only Marvin Harrison (190) and Keyshawn Johnson (167).

This week marks Miami's first of three consecutive home games. Last week they traveled to Washington and defeated the Commanders 45-15. Tua Tagovailoa completed two touchdown passes to Tyreek Hill, and rookie running back De'Von Achane rushed for a pair of touchdowns in the win.

Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa has started 12 games this season. The fourth-year signal caller is third in the NFL in passing yards (3,457), third in passer rating (106.0) and tied for second in touchdown passes (24) in 2023.

Head coach Mike McDaniel is in his second campaign with the Dolphins. In 2022, the former San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator led the Dolphins to a 9-8 record and a playoff berth. His 2023 team is in command of the AFC East, three games ahead of the 6-6 Buffalo Bills, who are in second place. The Dolphins own the NFL's top-ranked overall offense and the sixth-ranked overall defense.

10 must-see Nashville concerts you can't miss this December

As December rolls around, artists and performers will hit the stage in Nashville for another melodic month in Music City.While Christmas concerts and musical events may take center stage this month, there are still plenty of non-holiday-related events to attend as you catch your favorite artists on tour, performing at some of the final stops of 2023.Artists including Travis Scott, Megan Moroney, Charles Wesley Godwin and Old Crow Medicine Show are some of the musicians who will shine at Nashville venues this mont...

As December rolls around, artists and performers will hit the stage in Nashville for another melodic month in Music City.

While Christmas concerts and musical events may take center stage this month, there are still plenty of non-holiday-related events to attend as you catch your favorite artists on tour, performing at some of the final stops of 2023.

Artists including Travis Scott, Megan Moroney, Charles Wesley Godwin and Old Crow Medicine Show are some of the musicians who will shine at Nashville venues this month.

From up-and-coming artists to big names, here are The Tennessean's 10 must-see December 2023 concerts.

Dec. 4: Travis Scott

The "Sicko Mode" rapper and singer will hit the stage at Bridgestone Arena for his "Utopia - Circus Maximus" tour. Opener Teezo Touchdown will perform before Scott, known for his features in songs "Amen" with Drake and "Modern Jam" with Scott.

Scott's tour follows the release of his 2023 album "Utopia," which included hits "I Know?," "Fe!n," "Telekenesis" and "Meltdown."

Fans can buy tickets at travisscott.com.

Dec. 5: We Are Scientists

New York rock band We Are Scientists are headed to the Exit/In to perform their indie-alternative jams. The band, best known for songs "Nobody Move, Nobody Get Hurt," "After Hours" and "The Great Escape," released album "Lobes" in January.

For more information, fans can visit wearescientists.com.

Dec. 7: Megan Moroney

Nashville's up-and-coming country music sweetheart Megan Moroney will be performing at Brooklyn Bowl in Nashville. The Savannah, GA native released album "Lucky" in May, which included hits "Tennessee Orange," "I'm Not Pretty" and "Sleep on My Side."

For more information on the self-proclaimed "emo cowgirl," fans can visit meganmoroney.com.

Dec. 7/8: Charles Wesley Godwin

Charles Wesley Godwin, an American country-folk musician, will be performing for two evenings at Nashville's Ryman Auditorium. He will be joined by Mexican-American troubadour singer Wyatt Flores and Kentucky native rising star Cole Chaney.

Godwin, best known for songs "All Again," "Hardwood Floors" and "Jessie" released album "Family Ties" in September.

Fans can learn more about Godwin at charleswgodwin.com.

Dec. 8: Kevin Gates

Rapper and singer Kevin Gates will perform at Nashville's Bridgestone Arena with guests BigXthePlug and DJ Chose.

The 37-year-old "2 Phones" icon released single "Yonce Freestyle" (feat. Sexyy Red and B.G.) on Nov. 9. Gates also dropped album "Stronger Than Fiction" in July with hit "Thinking with My D***" (feat. Juicy J).

To grab tickets, fans can visit kvngates.com.

Dec. 9: 49 Winchester

Country band 49 Winchester will take to the stage at Brooklyn Bowl. The band released album "Fortune Favors the Bold" last year and singles "Everlasting Lover" and "Chemistry" in September.

The band will be supported by Nashville-based country singer Carter Faith, best known for song "Greener Pasture."

For more information on their tour, fans can head to 49winchester.com/tour.

Dec. 15: Old Dominion

Country band Old Dominion is headed to Bridgestone Arena as a stop on their American and European tour. The band will be accompanied by special guests Chase Rice, Priscilla Block and Kylie Morgan at their Nashville show.

Old Dominion released album "Memory Lane" in October, which included hits like its title track and "Can't Break Up Now."

Fans can find more information at weareolddominion.com.

Dec. 18: Bone Thugs-N-Harmony

Rap group Bone Thugs-N-Harmony are headed to the Brooklyn Bowl in Nashville for an evening of hip-hop fun.

The group, comprised of Krayzie Bone, Bizzy Bone, Layzie Bone, Wish Bone and Flesh-n-Bone are known for hits "The Crossroads," "Thuggish Ruggish Bone" and "1st of Tha Month."

Fans can buy tickets at brooklynbowl.com.

Dec. 30/31: Old Crow Medicine Show

Americana band Old Crow Medicine Show will play Nashville's historic Ryman Auditorium for two evenings at the end of the month, ending the year out with a New Year's Eve show.

On Dec. 30, the band will be accompanied by Willie Watson and Kasey Tyndall. On Dec. 31, Watson and Harper O'Neill will support the band.

Best known for songs "Wagon Wheel," "James River Blues" and "Down Home Girl," the band released album "Jubilee" in August.

For more information, fans can visit crowmedicine.com.

Dec. 31: New Year's Eve Live: Nashville's Big Bash

The year will come to a momentous, musical end at Nashville's Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park with Music City's Big Bash.

This year's line-up for the televised Jack Daniel's New Year's Eve Live show is an impressive one, including Thomas Rhett, Lainey Wilson and Lynyrd Skynyrd, as well as a "Music City Hip-Hop 50" show, a 50-minute tribute to 50 years of hip-hop music.

The big party will even include a guest DJ set from Nashville Mayor Freddie O'Connell.

For more information and a full line-up schedule, fans can head to visitmusiccity.com/newyearseve.

'We deserved it.' Pearl Cohn High School celebrates football state championship. It's Metro's first since 2008

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NORTH NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — The win for Pearl Cohn High School marks the first time a Metro Schools football team has won a state championship in more than a decade.

On Saturday, the team from North Nashville beat Putnam County's Upperman High School 36-27 in the Class 4A BlueCross Bowl. Catch a glimpse of the winning game and the school's enthusiasm in the player above.

North Nashville is not surprised this particular team that finally brought a gold ball home.

"I know how special these kids are because I actually watched these kids from PeeWee develop into young men to play this game," said Fatima Jones, a mom to a football player.

At Pearl Cohn's school-wide assembly on Monday, the head coach applauded the squad for their perseverance this season.

"Your drive, your determination, your hard work, your love for your teammates... that drive did not stop. It drove you through adversity when things were good and bad, and look what came out of it. Y'all won a state title, and I love you so much for it," said Coach Tony Brunetti.

Pearl Cohn parents are proud that their sons are getting well-deserved, positive recognition.

"37208. We get all the statistics for the wrong reasons. Now, we got it for right reasons and we deserved it," said TK Fayne, a mother of a player.

A big congratulations to Christ Presbyterian Academy, Middle Tennessee Christian School and Riverside High School for winning their state championship games as well.

Copyright 2023 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

What's Nashville's cold plant hardiness zone? What changes could mean for gardeners and growers.

On Nov. 15, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released a new version of its Plant Hardiness Zone Map, the first time it's done so since 2012.According to a release from the USDA, the new map is more accurate and contains greater detail than prior versions. The map indicates that while one half of the country remained in the same half zone, the other half shifted to the next warmer half zone, including Tennes...

On Nov. 15, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released a new version of its Plant Hardiness Zone Map, the first time it's done so since 2012.

According to a release from the USDA, the new map is more accurate and contains greater detail than prior versions. The map indicates that while one half of the country remained in the same half zone, the other half shifted to the next warmer half zone, including Tennessee.

What does this change signify? And what else can the updated map tell us? Here is what we know.

What is the plant hardiness zone map?

The map is the standard by which gardeners and growers can determine which plants are most likely to thrive in a location, it is based on the average annual extreme minimum winter temperature displayed as 10-degree F zones and 5-degree F half zones.

The new map is based on 30-year averages of the lowest annual winter temperatures at specific locations, is divided into 10-degree Fahrenheit zones and further divided into 5-degree Fahrenheit half-zones. The map incorporates data from 13,412 weather stations as opposed to the 7,983 that were used for the 2012 map.

What are plant hardiness zones?

Plant hardiness zones represent what’s known as the “average annual extreme minimum temperature” at a given location during a particular time period. The designations do not reflect the coldest it has ever been or ever will be at a specific location, rather the average lowest winter temperature for the location over a specified time.

"That shift to the next warmer half zone means those areas warmed somewhere in the range of 0-5 degrees Fahrenheit; however, some locations experienced warming in the range of 0-5 degrees Fahrenheit without moving to another half zone," said the USDA.

What does the change in zone mean for Tennessee?

In the latest map, Davidson County moved from the “7a” zone to the “7b” zone, meaning a 5-degree increase in the average annual extreme minimum temperature.

According to Amy Dunlap, University of Tennessee Knoxville extension agent for the Davidson County, this won't result in much change for gardeners.

"The plants that currently perform well here will largely remain the same since we are still in zone 7," she said. "When purchasing plants they typically will be labeled for their full hardiness zone, not segmented by 7a or 7b."

According to Dunlap, Davidson County is in a transition zone between hot and cold climates. UT Western Region Horticulture Specialist, Celeste Scott, said the western and southern parts of the state will likely be the ones to start pushing boundaries on growing plants that traditionally haven't performed well, however Middle Tennessee will still be able to grow the same species as before the change.

The changes to the map won't affect the way we should care for houseplants, said Dunlap. The same guidelines will still apply in protecting them from cold temperatures.

"Houseplants need to be brought inside when temperatures are consistently dipping to 50-55 degrees F," she said. "Cold sensitive landscape plants should be protected when temperatures dip to about 32 degrees F."

What does the change mean for plants in Tennessee?

All current species of plants will be unaffected, said Dunlap. There should not be any concern about the zone switch affecting existing landscape plants.

People will still be able to grow common hydrangeas, boxwoods and azaleas.

Are the changes in zone due to climate change?

According to the USDA, the changes in the zones are not indicators of global climate change due to the highly variable nature of the extreme minimum temperature of the year, as well as the use of sophisticated mapping methods and the inclusion of data from more weather stations.

Diana Leyva covers trending news and service for The Tennessean. Contact her at Dleyva@gannett.com or follow her on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, at @_leyvadiana

As Nashville's cost of living rises, transit should always be part of housing discussion

Transit-oriented development offers numerous benefits such as improved mobility, less traffic, economic growth, and environmental sustainability.Guest columnistADOur population and job growth have exceeded NashvilleNext's projections and our housing costs have constantly been well above the national average since 2016. Faced with a surging population, lack of housing options, climate...

Transit-oriented development offers numerous benefits such as improved mobility, less traffic, economic growth, and environmental sustainability.

Guest columnist

Our population and job growth have exceeded NashvilleNext's projections and our housing costs have constantly been well above the national average since 2016. Faced with a surging population, lack of housing options, climate issues like the heat island effect, and gentrification challenges, we need more tools for managing Nashville’s growth and to encourage a strong transit-oriented development policy.

Transit-oriented development (TOD) is a neighborhood planning strategy that aims to create mixed-use buildings with appropriate density. This approach ensures that housing, office, commercial, and public spaces are conveniently located near mobility options. TOD promotes sustainable growth by supporting well-utilized transportation and provides access to essential services like food and recreation.

While adopted plans would suggest implementation of TOD around neighborhood centers, incentives for developers to create this type of housing is not enough. Tools like Metro’s grant program, the Barnes Fund, and the Federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credit are great for building affordable housing but are only sometimes explicit about including transportation.

To support a quality of life we hope all Nashvillians can have, it is critical for low-income households to have convenient access to transportation services. If developers choose to focus mixed-use housing projects along well-used transit corridors they can justify eliminating expensive unnecessary parking.

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Mobility hubs provide solutions for equitable development

Newly elected officials campaigned on addressing affordable housing issues. A viable TOD policy is a tool that should be used to create equitable development along our pikes. Several nMotion recommended mobility hubs should be the locations for the TOD policy to be implemented.

The new hubs are ideal locations because many of these sites are already publicly owned property. If we can get Metro departments, like MDHA and WeGo, to create housing as part of the new buildings we will be well-positioned to build logical affordable housing above the new facilities. It is practically free land for housing projects.

Over the years the Civic Design Center has proposed several locations for mobility hubs with housing components. Most notably, the project over the Elizabeth Duff Transit Center at WeGo Central at MLK Blvd and 4th Ave N. The Design Center looked at the original drawings from the facility created by EOA Architecture, which had five floors of housing above the downtown bus hub but was eliminated from the project due to budget constraints.

We worked with the University of Tennessee College of Architecture and Design and Vanderbilt Engineering students to imagine the creation of a high-rise wood structure that could allow for at least 350 new occupants there. The Design Center has just released a publication on high-rise wood construction and features this project.

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Imagine if we could link South Nashville to downtown

Another dynamic opportunity is the future SoBro Mobility Hub that is called for in nMotion and is vital to Connect Downtown. This location could link all of South Nashville to downtown via fast and frequent transit. Situated on the corner of Lafayette and John Lewis Way, there is no better place to incorporate housing than on top of this new facility.

Especially since the land is already Metro owned and slated for a transit facility if we take the opportunity to build affordable housing the land could offset building costs and is a great chance for WeGo to coordinate with MDHA on a project that supports housing and transit ridership. We have also worked with UT to envision housing over the new East Bank transit facility.

TOD offers numerous benefits such as improved mobility, less traffic, economic growth, and environmental sustainability. By championing TOD, Nashville can become healthier, more prosperous, and combat climate change. We must implement a TOD incentive policy around recommended transit facilities from N-Motion.

Eric Hoke is the design director at the Civic Design Center. Projects over the past decade include Prioritizing Pedestrian Safety on Dickerson, envisioning a new park in Madison, and working on the New East Bank Neighborhood.

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