Candidate: Travis London
Metro Council District 28
Occupation: “I’m a Financial Operations Analyst for WonderBrands. I find ways to help the company become more efficient and effective while balancing upgrades but consider cost-saving measures.”
Previous candidacy/offices held: “None”
Community experience: “Davidson County Democratic Party Executive Committeeman D17”
What will be your top three priorities on the Council?
“1.) Infrastructure: sidewalks, public transit, roads.
2.) Public Education: Invest in our schools, educators, and student resources.
3.) Affordable Housing: Offering incentives for developers and looking at what the city currently owns.”
What is the biggest issue facing your district? How would you approach it?
“The safety of our roads. Right now, District 28 needs more walkable and accessible neighborhoods. Sidewalks would be a tremendous help on roads like Una-Antioch Pike and Murfreesboro Pike. There are so many areas that people have to walk on the side of the road to get anywhere, which is extremely dangerous. With the only bus route in the area being #55, there’s limited public transportation as well.”
Much of the city’s developmental focus, like plans for a new East Bank, have focused on downtown. What’s your vision for downtown?
“I think that our city’s developments and infrastructure expansions should be evenly distributed throughout the city. In the past 20 years the downtown area has grown and expanded, yet our infrastructure isn’t growing and expanding at the same rate. I want to see a more equitable distribution of development and infrastructure investments in South-East Davidson county just like downtown is getting. Having said that, Metro officials need to make downtown an area that is safe and enjoyable for residents, as well as tourists.”
Did you or would you have voted to approve the new Titans stadium financing legislation?
“While I agree we need a new stadium and I would love to see the East Bank developed, I would have voted no on the current deal because Nashville did not get as good of a deal as I think was possible with tougher negotiation. If the council had been able to implement the ticket fee amendment or other amendment that would have allowed Metro to collect a consistent revenue stream, I would have been more willing to consider voting ‘yes’.”
Does Metro need more police officers beyond the unfilled positions?
“I’m eager to see the new precinct built here in D28. There’s consistent racing on Murfreesboro Pike which is dangerous to all of those on the roads, specifically to pedestrians since there’s limited sidewalk on Murfreesboro Pike. But the Metro Nashville Police Department needs to invest in and build out the department’s mental health response units:not every situation requires a police officer to remedy the situation so we can prioritize our officers to incidents and calls that require a police presence.”
What do you think of the current framework passed by the council around LPR (license plate readers) usage? Do you think Metro should allow facial recognition technology to be used downtown?
“I am willing to support LPRs if I can be assured there are consistent checks and balances in place to ensure data is not used inappropriately and that the people in this city will be protected against any unlawful usage of the LPRs. I oppose facial recognition technology. It’s important that we protect our citizens from an overreach of authority from the city and intrusion into privacy.”
Do you think a property tax rate adjustment will be needed in the next 4 years? Why or why not?
“I’d like to study the city’s finances in greater detail, but I think it’s likely the city will need to consider an adjustment. Almost a decade passed between when former Mayor Karl Dean adjusted taxes in 2012 and Mayor Cooper did in 2021 — in retrospect, a smaller adjustment sooner may have helped the city’s finances and been less painful for property owners.”
Do you view your role in the Council as leading your district on issues or simply reflecting the views of the district’s residents?
“A councilmember has a dual role: both to listen to concerns from constituents but also to proactively bring larger city issues to constituents. Communication is crucial and when I’m elected, I plan to hold regular in-person community meetings — several current councilmembers do an excellent job with this — as well as going to community events to seek feedback.”
How do you view the relationship of the city and Council to the General Assembly in the face of adverse legislation from the state?
“While the Tennessee General Assembly currently acts averse to working with Metro leaders, we cannot, in some cases, accomplish what we need to without state support. For instance, should Metro intend to create a broader regional public transit system, we will, like or not, be dependent in part with the state. The mayor needs to initiate relationships with state leaders, but at the same time, we should vigorously challenge unsound state laws that are contrary to the will of Nashville’s voters — for instance, in the dissolution of the Community Oversight Board, which overwhelmingly passed in 2018.”
The city is experiencing an affordability crisis. What is the council’s role in creating more housing for buyers and renters in Nashville?
“The task of creating affordable housing is a complex one and Metro Council has not devoted enough time to it yet. It is one of the most serious issues in the city and is crucial to our continued success. Every candidate for mayor speaks of affordable housing, while few offer specific ideas on addressing it: council will need to hold the mayor accountable for promises made, if that means proactively researching solutions that will give developers incentive to build affordable, and attainable housing and continuing to apply pressure to the mayor.”
What improvements do you think WeGo should make during the next four years? Would you back creation of a dedicated funding source?
“One of my first priorities is to put covered bus stops at every bus stop on Murfreesboro Pike. In the Long term, I want a transportation hub in Antioch to serve South-East Davidson just as the WeGo hub does downtown. This area includes a number of people who rely on public transportation and we need to invest equitably in our public transportation system.”
“Nashville’s growth burdens both our highways and local streets and has become a quality of life issue. Although the last two transit efforts have failed, it is imperative Metro leaders place transit solutions near the top of the municipal agenda and I support creation of a dedicated funding source and a feasible short and long-term plan.”
Second-quarter campaign finance disclosure
Cash on hand: $1,632
Link to full disclosure here
Pre-General campaign finance disclosure
Cash on hand: $1,166
Link to full disclosure here