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, June 8, 2011

Creating Places: Bad West End architecture

During a recent drive along West End Avenue — and after mentioning the nastiness of the building home to Electronic Express in an earlier post — I took notes regarding buildings that mar what is Nashville's most high-profile street. My apologies to any motorists or pedestrians I may have endangered while doing so. The stretch of West End upon which I focused spans 16th Avenue on the east to I-440 on the west.

We'll start at West End's east edge and focus on one per blog entry.

Here we go:

The building home to Wells Fargo and near the West End/Broadway split. This structure is oriented with its south wall (sans windows, no less) blankly staring at the street. The building's signage is both out of proportion and ugly (the frankfurter red and mustard yellow combine to suggest somebody upchucked a hotdog). Some fairly attractive landscaping helps soften the hideous vibe, but the building offers a suburban feel and uninspired design. Too often, bankers opt for conservative designs for their buildings. The Wells Fargo West End is a classic example.

1 comment:

  1. Zoiks...I see where this is going. Be gentle.