Asheville Transportation Director Ken Putnam announces retirement

Asheville Transportation Department Director Ken Putnam has announced plans to retire from local government, effective January 1, 2024. Ken has been Director of the Transportation Department for the City since 2009 and has served in previous roles of City Traffic Engineer and Assistant Director of the Engineering and Transportation Department. He also serves as the City Engineer. Before coming to the City in 2007, Ken served in many roles with the North Carolina Department of Transportation.

During his tenure with the City of Asheville, Ken was instrumental in managing several projects that will have long lasting impacts on the Asheville community including:

  • I-26 Connector Project 
  • Adoption of the City’s Greenway Master Plan, ADA Transition Plan, and Pedestrian Master Plan (GAP) Plan in October 2022
  • Helped to secure a transit contractor (RATPDev) to enhance the provision of transit services to the community using revenue hour business model
  • Assisted in negotiations of the public/private partnership of the Aloft Hotel/Biltmore Parking Garage

“It has been an honor for me to work for the City of Asheville and its very dedicated staff especially since this is where I grew up,” stated Putnam.

City Manager Debra Campbell stated, “We appreciate the steady leadership that Ken has provided to the Transportation Department during his time with the organization. We wish Ken well in his retirement and the great team that he has built in Transportation will undoubtedly continue his legacy.” 

The City will initiate a nationwide search for the next Transportation Director in early November 2023.