Nashville Street Renamed After Late Civil Rights Leader and Congressman John Lewis

(© Nina Alexandrenko / The Tennessean) U.S. Rep. John Lewis, right, of Atlanta, receives an honorary doctor of laws degree during Fisk University commencement ceremonies May 14, 1990.

Nashville renamed a large portion of 5th Ave North after John Lewis, the late civil rights icon and congressman from Georgia who helped desegregate the city’s lunch counters.

The Nashville Metro Council voted on change Thursday night during its regular meeting.

An extensive part of 5th Avenue between Interstate 65 and Oak Street is now called Rep. John Lewis Way. The swap also means the stretch of the street between Broadway and Commerce will not longer be called Opry Place.

Nashville Councilman Freddle O’Connell praised Councilwoman Zulfat Suara for spearheading the move.

“The world needs #GoodTrouble right now,” O’Connell, who represents District 19, tweeted.

This fall, Suara submitted legislation on behalf of the body’s minority caucus, which  detailed some of the highlights of Lewis’ lifelong fight for freedom and equality, including his work in Nashville.

“Nashville prepared me,” Lewis said in 2013. “If it hadn’t been for Nashville, I would not be the person I am now.”

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SOURCE: USA Today; Nashville Tennessean, Natalie Neysa Alund