During the Spring 2016 Semester, The Greater Nashville Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) requested the fourth year undergraduate Nashville Urban Design Studio to explore a proposal for a “New East Bank Neighborhood in Nashville.” The site is on the Cumberland River, just across from Downtown Nashville’s skyline. At the present time, despite its proximate location, it is an industrial wasteland: what urban theorist Alan Berger terms a Drosscape. The site is inherently bounded and constrained by the CSX mainline railroad embankment to the north, the elevated embankment of the I-65 interstate highway to the east, the Woodland Street embankment and extensive football stadium parking lots to the south, and the Cumberland River to the west. Nonetheless, with downtown Nashville’s extraordinary building boom ongoing, with no end in sight, this 55-acre location would seem ripe for urban redevelopment.
A continuation of both The Plan of Nashville and Shaping the Healthy Community: The Nashville Plan, the Neighborhood Assessment Toolkit is an assessment and development scoring tool intended for local and community associations when engaging new development. The Toolkit is comprised of neighborhood and parcel assessment resources, along with a development scorecard based on the 10 Principles of the Plan of Nashville.
The Project for Public Spaces, on their organization’s web site, asks “what if we built our communities around places?” They then go on to define Placemaking as “both an overarching idea and a hands-on approach for improving a neighborhood, city, or region, Placemaking inspires people to collectively reimagine and reinvent public spaces as the heart of every community. Strengthening the connection between people and the places they share, Placemaking refers to a collaborative process by which we can shape our public realm in order to maximize shared value. More than just promoting better urban design, Placemaking facilitates creative patterns of use, paying particular attention to the physical, cultural, and social identities that define a place and support its ongoing evolution.”
Each team asked the questions “could the spaces proposed improve pedestrian, bicycle, and street connectivity? Could they maintain and/or strengthen street and/or bike and pedestrian connections depending on the site?” The intent was to promote walkable, bike-friendly environments and access to transit, with particular attention to providing connections between the proposed spaces and surrounding neighborhoods.
As Nashville’s economy and population booms, creating new opportunities for transit will help keep our communities healthy and prosperous. Currently, Nashville is a car-centric city leaving most of its people with the automobile as the only option for transportation. As driving costs, obesity rates, and the median age of the population continue to increase, providing transportation options becomes a priority to ensure public health and continued mobility.
A look at the UTK College of Architecture 2016 Summer Studio's project focusing on envisioning the Neuhoff Campus in East Germantown.
Nashville has an increasing and diverse demand for affordable housing. Past and current growth trends have led to concentrated poverty and gentrification throughout the city. As these issues are seen across the U.S., Daniel Parolek identifies “Missing Middle” housing as a solution to this mismatch between current U.S. housing and shifting demographics.
Led by Conexión Américas and funded by the Kresge Foundation, ENVISION NOLENSVILLE PIKE maps out --literally and figuratively-- the aspirations and dreams for the Nolensville Pike corridor as expressed by residents and business owners during community gatherings. A public/private partnership with the Nashville Area MPO, Transportation for America and the Nashville Civic Design Center.
A snapshot of the downtown transect chapter from Shaping The Healthy Community: The Nashville Plan
A snapshot of the centers transect chapter from Shaping The Healthy Community: The Nashville Plan
A snapshot of the suburban transect chapter from Shaping The Healthy Community: The Nashville Plan
A snapshot of the rural transect chapter from Shaping The Healthy Community: The Nashville Plan
Green Hills is a shopping destination center that was designed around the automobile. The construction of the Mall has spurred commercial development along Hillsboro Pike, in a suburban, strip-mall format with surface parking fronting the corridor. This type of development is not conducive to walking or biking, but instead increases road congestion and discourages a healthy lifestyle. This publication is a result of the work done in partnership with TURBO Nashville and the Alliance for Green Hills.
Around the globe – and especially in the US where our national highway system has penetrated nearly every major city – local governments, state departments of transportation, and even private organiza-tions are experimenting with transforming the quality of space found beneath and near interstate over-passes. Areas typically designed for cars are receiving face-lifts, and occasionally, new programmatic uses. Enhancements to these types of bridges and overpasses range from minor treatments to intense renovation and reconstruction like the proposed skatepark.
The goal of evaluating public access to roads in Nashville is to create an awareness of various road restrictions caused by situations such as construction and special events and how such occurrences affect the public. The proposals presented are intended to inform, improve, and reclaim various spaces to improve the convenience and safety of walking, cycling, and using public transit in a shared road space.
The vision for Nashville’s Riverfront is one that is aimed towards defining and enhancing the unique cultural identity of Music City, USA. As a thriving commercial and industrial district, Nashville’s focus on providing a vibrant waterfront experience for all has recently been bolstered by newly-constructed or renovated landmarks.
Summer Session One was comprised of ten students enrolled in ARCH 483: Urban Design Vertical Studio. This course addresses urban design projects responding to specific Greater Nashville conditions, with exploration of urban issues in understanding and making the city’s architecture. Student investigations analyze cultural, physical and environmental influences on architectural form, space and structure. Summer Session Two was ARCH 465: Directed Research. With a faculty member’s scholarship, each student works on a specific topic or project related to that faculty member’s area of expertise, research, scholarship, or creative activity. The product seeks to become a publication.
This book explores case studies of successful transit-oriented developments from around the United States and offers recommendations for a route along Middle Tennessee’s northwest corridor, a critical route from Nashville to Clarksville. This corridor was originally identified in the Nashville Area Metropolitan Planning Organization’s (MPO) 2035 Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) as a key connection in Middle Tennessee’s mass transit vision. This recommendation was supported by the MPO’s 2008 feasibility study which produced potential alignments for commuter rail, route improvements, capital costs and preliminary operations budget for the corridor between Clarksville and Nashville. Expanding upon that work, in early 2015 the MPO and the Regional Transit Authority (RTA) launched a Northwest Corridor Study to examine cost effective transit improvements in the northwest corridor to connect travelers to destinations (work, school, shopping, entertainment, etc.) and address anticipated traffic congestion.
Metro Nashville is projected to add 200,000 new residents and approximately 300,000 new jobs over the next 25 years. In order to accommodate this influx of growth, Metro must be responsive and proactive in how we design our city and county. While we expect a fair amount of re-development in the urban core as well as greenfield development in the region’s outer reaches, it’s the places in-between that have the most potential. Nashville Next, the general plan for Nashville’s future, calls for city’s pikes and the centers located at their crossroads, to be the areas that will accommodate new residents and workers as we grow. Therefore retrofitting these suburban areas and re- imagining them as mixed-use, vibrant places is imperative to the success of Nashville’s future. These suburban locales offer both a tremendous challenge and a great opportunity for redevelopment in the coming decades.
This publication was a suggestion for the adjacent parcels to the Casa Azafran Community Center on Nolensville Road. It examines three different properties that would serve several purposes for the surrounding community.
This publication is intended to offer case studies and proposals for retrofitting Antioch in ways that incorporate ideas for sustainable community design and multi-modal transportation solutions.
Seeding Spaces is a publication examining the state of urban agriculture in Nashville
University of Tennessee College of Architecture and Design student concepts for a visitor center at Centennial Park.
The addition of two new schools in downtown could have a dramatic positive affect on the growth and new development in the urban core of Nashville, reversing the trends of suburbanization and promoting a more urban and sustainable lifestyle. In the book Urban Design, author Jon Lang describes the idea behind “plug-in urban design,” as the strategic placement of infrastructure in a city to spur development and/or unify development, incentivize owners, and boost an area’s competitive advantage. Lang complements his discussion of plug-in design by examining the recent construction of two schools in Chattanooga: “[Schools] are part of every day life. Good schools are essential in attracting middle-income families to live nearby. The catalytic effect is social, economic, and physical.”
This publication focuses on the implementation of transit development due to increasing population and urban growth. This development is a result of the growth in the BRT line along Gallatin Pike, and also an outlook on transit-ready development (TRD). The objectives of this publication includes, “communicating the role of transit-oriented development, evaluating successful TRD precedents, charting Nashville’s progress on implementation, and the featuring of existing projects that emphasize goals of compact, mixed-use development.”
During the process of creating The Plan of Nashville, the convergence of Ellington Parkway, I-24, Main Street, Spring Street, and Dickerson Pike in East Nashville, often referred to as “Spaghetti Junction “was identified as a prime location for redevelopment.
Urban Design Vertical Studio was a course that addressed urban design projects responding to specific Greater Nashville conditions, with exploration of urban issues in understanding and making the city’s architecture. Student investigations analyze cultural, physical and environmental influences on architectural form, space and structure. A second session, Directed Research, was were each student worked on a specific topic or project related to that faculty member’s area of expertise, research, scholarship, or creative activity.
Designing Action is an international design competition made possible by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. The competition envisioned new design concepts for Nashville's East Bank.
The United States is challenged with the highest obesity rates in the world, a sobering fact potentially attributed to an environment lacking effective public open space. We have seemingly shaped an environment where childhood obesity has quadrupled, and 42 percent of Americans are projected to be obese by 2030.
In response to the fact that one in four Nashvillians are obese, our city’s planning practices have shifted towards creating healthier built environments.
Urban infill development allows cities to reclaim vacant or underutilized land by encouraging a greater mixture of residential, retail, and employment opportunities, this usually includes the integration of health-conscience land uses; such as open space for productive urban gardens, commercial horticulture, and even neighborhood playgrounds. Urban infill is crucial for providing space for transit infrastructure as well as development close to transit stations in the form of transit-oriented development (TOD) areas.
In the public charrette workshops, community members analyzed the livability of their respective communities based on a variety of concerns. These factors, listed below, measure the overall success of a community’s livability for current citizens and future generations.
Active Learning, Beautification, Civic, Convenience, Entertainment, Food Access, Health Care, Housing Type.
Work with UTCoAD students study Clarksville and the riverfront area
A popular movement in the past decade has been to implement transit oriented development in city planning. Transit-oriented development, or TOD, is nationally characterized as mixed-use development located within a 2,000 feet diameter from a mass transit center. However, the typical format for TOD in the United States, initiated by Peter Calthorpe and fermented in the West Coast, lacks consideration in sustainability and authenticity. On the other hand, TOD has been wildly more successful in European cities than in America (as is reflected in the percentage of individuals that use public transportation) by implementing an integrated transportation system that combines different modes of mobility (rail, tram, metro, bus, car, bike and pedestrian).
The distinct nature of Nashville’s Interstate Loop as a corridor around the city has created a fissure in the topography of Nashville. Both the downtown and midtown districts are divided by the Interstate canyon. It is a significant urban fissure, in that it is a transitional zone where commuters and travelers arrive and depart the city. Intense traffic entering and exiting the Interstate discourages pedestrians and cyclists from traversing the gap. The Metropolitan Development and Housing Agency (MDHA) has designated almost all of this area a blighted Redevelopment Zone. Unfortunately, the site’s present condition forces its proximity and excellent views of downtown to be overlooked. It is the proposal of the Nashville Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) to explore platforming over 3,800 linear feet of the Interstate “Canyon,” south of Church Street and north of 12th Avenue, in order to develop an air rights linear green space.
The Nashville Sounds are Middle Tennessee’s AAA minor league baseball team. They had been playing at Herschel Greer Stadium (capacity 10,300), which is located in Fort Negley Park, since 1978. The facilities, while having served Nashville well, left much to be desired when compared to other cities’ more modern AAA stadiums. Its location made accessing the stadium difficult for newcomers, and it did little to engage or enhance its built environment.
Enhancing the Bridges is a project of the Nashville Civic Design Center in partnership with the Nashville Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). This study was made possible by a grant from the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) and the Federal Highway Administration.
The aging baby-boomer population of Nashville, and across the United States, has created a demographic shift in recent years. In 2000, the majority of Nashville’s population was an age group of 21-34, greatly outnumbering those 65 years and older by more than half. It is estimated by 2018 that both age groups will be equal in number. This dramatic shift has been an incentive for cities across the country to reexamine the livability of their communities and implement changes to meet the universal needs of a multi-generational citizenry. The city of Nashville has been no exception in examining the needs of an ever-changing population. As a result, The Nashville Livability Project, an initiative by Mayor Karl Dean and Vice Mayor Diane Neighbors, was created in 2009 following the research and recommendations of the Livable Community Task Force. Since inception, it has been the goal of the Nashville Livability Project to address the issues of the aging Nashville population and examine the obstacles in creating a more livable and universally designed city for all generations, community by community.
Developing with Transit is a project of the Nashville Civic Design Center in partnership with the Nashville Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). This study was made possible by a grant from the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) and the Federal Highway Administration.
Building more livable communities - Public Charrette workshop report: Madison and Sylvan Park
Nashville and Davidson County location study and typology recommendations.
an important challenge of The Plan of Nashville is to recapture Nashville’s historic pikes-turned-arterials as the means to link and enhance all elements of the city. to reestablish our traditional pikes as great corridors we must do nothing more–or less– than apply the lessons of urban avenues and boulevards.
Reclaiming Public Space is a project of the Nashville Civic Design Center in partnership with the Nashville Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). This study was made possible by a grant from the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) and the Federal Highway Administration.
The goals of this publication are to create a report to the Mayor that is reflective of public input and offers recommendations on the future use of the site. The information contained in this report resulted from the public workshops organized by the NCDC, in conjunction with the Fairgrounds Task Force.
The Nashville Civic Design Center announced the Germantown Gateway Design Competition, to create gateway identities for one of Nashville’s most historic and neighborhoods. The competition was a partnership with Historic Germantown Nashville, Inc.
This report was produced by the Nashville Civic Design Center staff in cooperation with the Nashville neighborhood groups with which the center has worked in the past. The report was written by Sarah Floyd, staff intern, and edited by Gary Gaston, Design Studio Director, with significant contributions by Anna Shell and Marielle Lovecchio, staff interns.
This report presents a set of 16 goals and 71 recommendations ranging from energy conservation to transportation to public participation. The attainment of our ambitious vision for Nashville’s future will require focused implementation on the part of both public and private sec-tors of our city.
The A.I.A. 150 Blueprint for America Community Assessment and Visioning Workshop for Kingston Springs
Revitalizing the town center and conserving open land in Kingston Springs summary report
This booklet contains detailed information explaining and illustrating these recommendations. The following pages outline issues that were raised during the community meetings, explaining information that was obtained through research by the Civic Design Center, and expands upon the recommendations given to the neighborhood.
The AIA 150 Blueprint for America Assessment and Visioning Workshop for Lebanon.
The AIA 150 Blueprint for America Visioning Workshop for Robertson County. Summary report on preserving open space and revitalizing historic town centers.
Looking at the potential of blank walls around downtown Nashville.
The Location and Design if a Proposed New Convention Center, Hotel, and Parking in Downtown Nashville
On February 17, 2006, the Music City Center Task Force presented to Mayor Bill Purcell and the citizens of Nashville their report entitled The Music City Center for Nashville’s Future (MCC Report) recommending that a new convention center and hotel with parking be constructed downtown on a site in SoBro south of the Gaylord Entertainment Center (GEC). At that time, Mayor Purcell asked the University of Tennessee’s Center for Business and Economic Research to assess the financial assumptions of the MCC Report. He simultaneously requested the Nashville Civic Design Center conduct an assessment of the location and design implications of the proposal, incorporating public meetings for community-wide input. The Mayor’s request to the Civic Design Center paralleled a similar recommendation for input and public meetings in the MCC Report.
Cohousing residents are consciously committed to living as a wholly integrated community. The physical design of cohousing communities encourages social interaction, while allowing for an appropriate amount of individual space. The private homes throughout the community feature the amenities offered in conventional homes. However, residents have additional access to open green space, courtyards, children’s playgrounds and a common house. Frequently, members of the community share meals in the common house, while also sharing in childcare, gardening and neighborhood governance. By sharing in each of these aspects, a strong sense of community is fostered and created by the residents.
This analysis of development opportunity sites along Dickerson Road is to be used by perspective developers as a supplement to the Metro Planning Department’s work on the East Nashville Community Plan.
At the request of the Metropolitan Development and Housing Agency (MDHA) the Nashville Civic Design Center conducted a study of the Lafayette - 8th Avenue Area.
This booklet contains detailed information explaining and illustrating these recommendations. The following pages outline each issue that was raised during the community meetings.
Public Meeting Report
At the request of the Organized Neighbors of Edgehill (ONE) the Nashville Civic Design Center conducted a study of the Edgehill Neighborhood. The study area is to the south of The Gulch, north of Wedgwood Ave., west of 8th Avenue South and east of the alley separating Villa Place and 16th Avenue South.
Since the opening of the downtown Library, there has been renewed interest in the role that Capitol Boulevard, the street directly in front of the Library, plays in the life of the city. The Nashville Civic Design Center, the Library’s neighbor at 7th and Church, has been study ing public space downtown over the past year and placed Capitol Bou le vard at the top of its research agenda be cause of its prominence and potential. The drawings presented here are three, of possibly many, concepts for what Capitol Boulevard can become as we con tin u ous ly try to improve the quality of downtown Nashville.
This document was produced to help guide development of the Metro-owned properties known as Rolling Mill Hill. These holdings include the site of the former Metropolitan Hospital and the area of the historic trolley car barns. The work was produced by the Nashville Civic Design Center in concert with the greater Nashville community. The design staff and interns of the Civic Design Center during the study were: Mark M. Schimmenti, Design Director; John Houghton, Design Assistant; and the design interns Blythe Bailey, Ted Booth, Abbie Lee Majors, and Catherine Tracy. The historical research was conducted by Astrid Schoonhoven. The geological study was by John Houghton. Judy Steele of the Metropolitan Development and Housing Agency, Randall Hutcheson of the Metro Planning Department, and Jeff Campbell of Metro Public Works contributed significantly to the report.
The Nashville Civic Design Center conducted thefollowing design research and analysis to help guide community development immediately north of downtown Nashville, an area bounded by I-265/65, JamesRobertson Parkway, and the Cumberland River. The study area included the neighborhoods of Buena Vista, East Germantown, Germantown, Hope Gardens, and Salemtown.