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.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Creating Places: Looking at the urban core

Met with some chums today to discuss various built environment matters and just shared some basic thoughts with one via email. This is regarding long-term growth in Nashville's urban core. Here is what I wrote (and my opinion could change tomorrow):

I actually think the Vanderbilt/West End corridor has the brightest future of all the districts. I'm afraid the Central Business District is limited for future growth as the parcels available are small, expensive (and thus raise the question of cost-effectiveness for redevelopment) and lucrative as surface parking lots. SoBro south of Peabody Street is a MAJOR question mark. I'm not as high on SoBro's long-term growth as perhaps are others (with maybe the general Rolling Mill Hill area being an exception). Crossland and the North Gulch could be 10 years away minimum. I don't have much hope for that district in the immediate future, although Eleven North will help. I do like the potential of the Gulch proper for various reasons. The proposed 1.5 million in office and retail space is intriguing — not to mention highly ambitious. North Capitol is a wildcard. If no Sounds stadium or African-American museum are forthcoming, who knows. Germantown has strong long-term potential.

1 comment:

  1. I don't think SOBRO south of Peabody may be major question. I feel as soon as MCC is opened the area is going to boom. The recent motivational conference during the day brought a packed house to the arena and lines were out the doors at all eateries. Imagine when the 2 million square foot MCC is fully booked all day. South of Peabody is ripe for hotels, restaurants, and retail. Its going to feed that beast.

    But, I do agree with you about West End. It has the most potential. I have for the longest time believed there were simply not enough apartments. To live in West End, it is either a high-end condo, or a rental situation geared for the students. And now, at least 2 major projects are in the works. Vandy/West End has so much to offer for urban living. It just needs more residents.