Hamilton Herald Masthead


Front Page - Friday, March 29, 2019

Proposed West End designs released

- Images provided by Dover, Kohl & Partners

Urban Story Ventures is giving the public its first look at the proposed redevelopment of 112 acres of Chattanooga riverfront branded as West End.

Designs drafted by Dover, Kohl & Partners, a town planning firm based in Miami, depict a new district where people will “live, work, shop and play” along the Tennessee River.

“The draft concept for West End creates a unique and local neighborhood that’s for everyone,” says Jimmy White, co-owner of Urban Story Ventures. “We’ll have people of all incomes and backgrounds living and working alongside each other in an area that will provide thousands of jobs over our long-term redevelopment plans.

“As a Chattanoogan, I’m invested in preserving our city’s character and breathing life into dormant properties. Dover and his team have captured Chattanooga’s history while drafting a sustainable plan for our city’s future.”

Collectively called Envision West End, the concepts outline a walkable neighborhood which does not eliminate cars but provides the option for people to walk, bike, take transit or drive along tree-lined streets and past green public spaces.

A fanned street grid will connect people to Riverfront Parkway and the Tennessee River.

The plan calls for mixed-use redevelopment of the 112 acres with varying house types and workplaces as well as recreation and entertainment. The former Alstom building is central to the economic impact of the new neighborhood with plans to resume manufacturing at the site.

There is already early interest from multiple advanced manufacturing prospects and the draft design proposes space for a corporate headquarters for a future company, White says.

“The draft design is a livable neighborhood that provides convenience with dining, shopping, housing, jobs and entertainment in one district,” says Victor Dover, founding principal of Dover, Kohl & Partners.

While the vision offers convenience, it’s also packed with charm, Dover adds. “The concept calls for salvaging materials from the old factories and continuing the waterfront revival with the connection to the river.”

The draft design recommends varying architecture but elements that work together overall. In addition, the architecture and street network will seek to restitch this section of Chattanooga to downtown.

For visitors and residents, visual cues and landmarks throughout the district will establish that they are in a unique and defined neighborhood.

To preserve Chattanooga’s history, the draft design proposes keeping part of the steel frames of the old factories with the ability for streets and parks to exist under them.

Since the Tennessee River is an essential feature of the new neighborhood, the plan advises keeping the vast majority of land along the riverbank as a linear park. The designs also expand on the Tennessee Riverwalk with a series of public spaces.

Building on the river connection, the plans bring the river experience into the land through canal features, opportunities for recreation and stormwater devices that double as landscaping and water features. All of the new green spaces and trees will help treat stormwater before it flows into the river.

Envision West End includes an economic analysis on the market potential over the next several years. Multiple opportunities are outlined for the first few years with hotel rooms, apartments and additional housing slated for the second phase.

In years 1-4, the site could attract:

  • 40,000-60,000 square feet of existing office space leases
  • 30,000-50,000 square feet of new office space
  • 25-50 annual townhouse sales to millennials
  • 50-75 annual condominium and townhouse sales to retirees
  • a 10,000 square-foot food hall with an associated music venue
  • a canal that brings the river into the land
  • a brewpub
  • artist spaces
  • a child care center
  • up to 5,000 square feet of food retailing

As the market absorbs the newest additions to the hotel and apartment inventory in years 5-10, opportunities could expand to include:

  • 30,000-50,000 square feet of new office space
  • the first phase of a 150,000-300,000 square-foot headquarters office building
  • two hotels, each with 100-150 rooms
  • 200-400 multifamily apartments in varying development sizes
  • 25-50 annual townhouse sales to millennials
  • 75-120 annual condominium and townhouse sales to retirees
  • 10,000-15,000 square feet of retail, service and restaurant spaces

Activity is already underway on the property and initial new jobs and businesses will be announced in the coming weeks.

More at www.urbanstoryventures.com

Source: Urban Story Ventures