Creating Places: A Citizen Observer's Look at Nashville's Built Environment

Writer's Note: William Williams' interest in the manmade environment dates to 1970, at which point the then-young Williams started a collection of postcards of city skylines. The collection now numbers 1,000-plus cards. Among the writer's specific interests are exterior building design, city district planning, demographics, signage, mixed-use development, mass transit and green/sustainable construction and living. Williams began his Creating Places column with The City Paper in February 2005. The column in its original form was discontinued in September 2008 and reinvented via this blog in November 2008. Creating Places can be found on the home page of the website of The City Paper, at which Williams has worked in various capacities since October 2000.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Creating Places: You know you're obsessed...

... with Nashville's manmade fabric when you notice the least imposing tower crane on the Music City Center work site being dismantled — and get a bit sentimental.

Wait a minute. I think I might be wrong about that crane. I've got a call into MCC spokeswoman Holly McCall. Will update soon.

O.K., I'm talking to Holly right now. Tower Crane No. 3 (of six) is being disassembled. And Tower Crane No. 5 (on the northwest corner of the site and near Eighth Avenue) will be removed in the next few weeks. The cranes are no longer needed because the concrete phase is tapering to a close.

Only four cranes will remain at that point.

I'll miss the cranes, but to see the steel skeleton take shape is joyous.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Creating Places: Beaman Automotive update

I noticed today the generic building that is located at Broadway and 17th Avenue South and that is part of the massive Beaman Automotive complex has been updated with a horizontal metal piece framing its top. The new-look structure looks better than it had — which is saying very little when one considers the previous iteration was no more architecturally attractive than, say, the building home to Circle K on Belmont Boulevard.

I suspect — and surely hope, given its hideous gray stucco exterior — the rest of the building will receive further improvements.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Creating Places: You know you're obsessed...

...with the manmade environment when you note the difference in attractiveness between types of cinderblock used for buildings' bases.