Congratulations to Milwaukee native and alumnus David Metzger (’85 MS Transportation Engineering, ’84 BS Civil Engineering) who in June received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Northeast Tennessee Tourism Association.
Metzger is the transportation engineer for Bristol, TN, and the award recognizes his outstanding work on detailed traffic plans that have kept traffic flowing during the city’s special events – particularly those held at the 156,000-seat Bristol Motor Speedway — over the past three decades.
The traffic at the speedway impacts the entire region and Metzger’s excellent job demonstrates the relationship between tourism and transportation. He has developed traffic plans for 199 NASCAR events, 20 Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festivals, the 2016 Battle at Bristol (a college football game that set the Guinness record for largest attendance at an American football game), and hundreds of 5K races, outdoor concerts, holiday parades, community celebrations and other events that bring visitors to the region.
In a press release, the City of Bristol states that Metzger is a master at transportation planning and a true community treasure.
“His penchant for complicated algorithms and incredible knowledge of traffic regulations are so impressive, in fact, that officials from major sports organizations likethe Green Bay Packers, the Kansas City Chiefs, and the Master’s Tournament have borrowed details from his complex traffic plans.
What’s even more impressive, however, is that David humbly insists that the most rewarding part of his job is ‘when you know everyone got home safely and everyone had a positive experience. … If someone sits in traffic for hours, they may leave with a bad taste in their mouth. The goal of the whole plan is to make sure everyone can get where they’re going and has an enjoyable time so they’ll come back again.’ ”