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About Baronakim

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  • Birthday 05/04/1947

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    Columbia TN
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    Medieval reenactment society, gardening, prospecting, books, books & more books.

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  1. Continuing the 1970s "urban renewal" of 6 Nashville city blocks. On to 4th Avenue N. First the aerial view looking North Starting in the lower left corner are two buildings of enourmous loss...the Commerce Union Bank on the NW corner of 4th & Union and the magnificant American National Bank on the NE corner. i can't sufficiently mourn the loss of these two landmark Nashville towers. On the SE corner we see the old Royal Cigar store. Further up north on 4th, we see an old two story on the SW corner of Deadrick. Note on the SE corner is the parking deck for the First American National Bank. On the NW corner we see a very old two story building from the early 20th century with the Colored YMCA B uilding beyond.. The Colored YMCA was originally built as the Duncan Hotel built in 1889 by wealthy Nashville broker William M. Duncan. This massive brick building was trimmed in stone and occupied a fourth of the block on the southeast corner of Cherry and Cedar Street (now Fourth and Charlotte). An identifying cupola made the building very unique. The Duncan had four floors comprised of forty-five rooms originally booked for three to five dollars per night. Its location made it convenient to both business and entertainment, but after the panic of 1893, competition from new hotels and a shift in business and entertainment to Church Street made the Duncan's location less desirable to visitors. By 1916 the Duncan had closed its doors as a hotel, and the building was remodeled to be used as the new home for the Colored Y.M.C.A. and the Citizens Savings Bank and Trust. The Duncan Hotel building was razed in the early 1970s during downtown urban renewal. Of the East side of this block there was the end of the large commercial building on Deaderick Street. In this photo from 1925, we see it as Lowensteins next to the Transfer Station for the Street Trollies. The buildings are mostly the same in the 1960s except that the Transfer Station was a surface parking lot. The building with the vertical "Commercial" signage was a hotel demolished the folowing year for the construction of the Morris Memorial Building. Here is one of the building we see to the left of the photo of the Duncan Hotel above. In this one taken in the late 1960s, we can also see part of the Morris Memorial Building. It is visable in the 1924 photo The Morris Memorial Building is the only survivor of the overwhelming demolition of the 1960s & 1970s at this end of 4th Avenue N. Of the buildings on the West side of 4th Avenue N. there is little photographic documentation except that of the corner building on the left and a photo of part of the same building looking east down Charlotte on the right side of the photo Her,e I will cut the 4th Avenue North photos as I will cover the area below Capitol Hill down to the Square in a post coving the demolition of the black business district for the City Auditorium construction. Next I will cover the 3rd Avenue N. and the demolition of the East side of the square on Union.
  2. My post showing the Andrew Jackson demolition a week or so ago was mainly to show some of the most familiar buildings we lost in the six bloock "remewal" and the expansion of the Courthouse square to the South. This post is to show the extent of the loss of Old Nashville befrore TPAC and the banks and hotels which now occupy entire blocks. I suppose the best way is to take a look at 6rd and 5th Avenues, , then 4th and 3rd Avenues, then the 3 major streets, Union, Deadrick and Charlotte.. Later posts will cover the black business district demolished for the Auditorium and vicinity and the neighborhoods wiped clean for the James Robertson Parkway; then finally the demolition for the National Life (Snodgrass) Tower. As we started on 6th Avene N. with the hotels, I will add in some odds and ends about it. It's original name was High Street and the area next to the Capitaol was very ritzy. Here is an old, old photo showing the street where the hotels would be built in the 1920s. Note the second home on the right survived as the B.P.O.E. Lodge. Here is a view looking up 6th towards the Capitiol and another from the old WM square showing the Andrew jackson parking garage next to the B.P.O.E. Lodge over by Union. . At the end of 6th at Charlotte, which was originally Cedar Street, this photo shows the old office building on the corner demolished for the new Highway Department Bilding and which was a surface parking lot by the 1960s. It has a great view down Charlotte to the Courthouse. The domed spire of St. Marys is visable. Here are a few views fown 6th at the AJH and in the other direction. The North end of 5th Avenue N. is still graced by St. Mary's Cathedral on the east side of 5th. Here is the corner in 1955 with the L&C Towere rising and some of the buildings beyond.. These are not many photos I can locate of the West side of 5th as they were largely the side of Montgomery Ward Department store and its back parking garage between Union and Deadrick The buildings accross from St. Marys faced mainly on Charlotte or Deadrick instead of 5th. The same is true for the East side of 5th across from Montgomery Ward...old two story businesses fronting on Deadrick or Union which dated from Victorian to 1930s eras. Across Union from Montgomerey Ward was another great Nashville Department store was Lovemans. Here is a photo in the late 50s looking down 5th to the North showing the great shopping district in downtown blocks. You can clearly see the Montgomery ward sign and the State Office building on Capitol Hill through the street decorations.
  3. Here's one of my own architectural proposals back way before Urban Planet (1983) . Hell, even before the internet. I wish I could find the other overall renderings...still looking. I do have a bunch of hand drawn elevations I did. The site of this project was at the present Skyline Hospital. It was a massive area from Dickerson Pike to I-65 and bounded by Due West and Briley Parkway. Across Dickerson Pike, there was a proposal including a 20 story Tennessee Financial Tower, a huge zoo proposal, an 18 hole golf course over by Brick Church Pike and over by I-24, an Olympic Equestion Complex. The project on the east side of Dickerson was called Eurosphere and was to be a massive mall with entirelly European tenants, including Harrods Department store out of London. There were 3 high end residential complexes based on historic French, English and Swiss designs. Even a working windwmill and a Belgian complex for chochlateers. We got as far as negotiating with Gresham Smith and Ragan Smith Associates to produce working drawings. Then the US economy crashed and the project was lost. It included a full scale copy of the Flavian Arena from Rome, Big Ben and the Arch D'Triumph. What you see here is the windmill and such up on top of the big hill by the hospital. You got up there either by car or the world's longest escalators entered below from inside a replica of the Crystal Palace. All the parking was completely in garages like the one you see screened by falling watter. Renderings like these were all handpainted...this was old time work for us architects before computers were worth a damn. Hope y'all get a giggle out of my sheer audacity.
  4. It has taken me some time to locate photograpghs of an area that I have wanted to share with most of the younger folks on the forum. 50 years ago I remember the gutting of downtown Nashville under the auspices of "Urban Renewal" About 1/3 of Nashville was relentlessly demolished in a single decade from Capitol Hill at 6th Avenue N. down to the Courthouse at 3rd Avenue, leaving only the Morris Building and St. Mary's Cathedral standing of our historic city buildings north of Union Street. The most iconic we probably all still mourn are the two well known hotels, the Andrew jackson and the Sam Davis. I will begin with the demolition of the Andrew Jackson. for the construction of TPAC and the adjacent beautiful Victorian which was built on the site of the Felix Zollicoffer home. This litte known building next to the hotel I remember housied the B.P.O.E Lodge, the building itself generally known as the Zollicoffer House. When it was destroyed, the empty building still had hundreds of antique German steins, most dating from the 1800s, in the basement Rathskeller of the Lodge. No one cared to bother to rescue them. In a series of posts, I will try to document the wanton destruction of downtown shops, churches and other historic structures in the six city blocks bounded by Union Street and Charlotte Avenue from 3rd Avenue N. to Warmemorial Plaza at 6th Avenue N. Here is a photo of the vast cleared area in progress right after the Andrew Jackson Hotel Demolition in 1971. The still standing ruin of the Zollicoffer House (B.P.O.E. Lodge) was built on the site of the 1840s home of the Civil War general felix Zollicoffer on 6th Avenue N. . Here are photos and postcards of the demolished buildings on 6th Avenue N. . Here is the aftermath of the Andrew Jackson demolition . Here is an areial view of the rear of the AndrewJjackson Hotel and the Cotton states Building otherwise known as the Tennessee Highway Department Building in the late 60s before the new State Highway office building was erected behind it iin about 1969 as you see in the first photo . . This sad topic will be a rather massive serries of posts as I will document much more than the six city blocks between Union and Charlotte. The area of destruction wraps around Capitol Hill into the historically black business districts lost with the construction of the new City Auditorium and James Robertson Parkway, a massive clearing which is still a boring wasteland of surface parking. Bear with me; this is going to trake a little time to adequately cover the losses. P.S....Many of you newer members may want to review some of my previous posts in this topic thread and in Old Nashville Treasures topic thread that show a lot of Nashville history you might enjoy. Still photos from Nashville Metro Archives. I will expound on the Andrew Jackson in an upcoming post on history of mid 20th century hotels in Nashville.
  5. A few more of the Drone Guy's super photos from last summer. Outstanding views!
  6. These showed up on my Facebook this morning. I don't remember having seen these before on our forum. They were shot by a fellow called the Drone Guy this summer. I think he is from Ohio and shoots cities all round the country. These are really good IMO. Anyone remember them?
  7. Sorry Smeagol, I completely disagree with you about skybridges. Vegas ia a completey different street situation from Nashville, especially at lower Broad. The Vegas skybridges are monsters with escalators and of broad widths. What honky tonks are going to sacrifice their street visability for one of those monster ends in front of it? Plus the sidewalks in Nashville are not sufficently wide enough to install these monsters without narrowing the sidewalks to pinch points. Any of the projecting neon signages would have to go and the speed of the traffic is slower than vegas is much slower being at the end of the street at the river. In Vegas, the street is a main thoroughfare. Also, these mega skybridges would be subject to the ADA, very much like the elevator tower was required on the old Shelby Bridge makeover to a pedestrian only bridge. So...these bridges would require both escalators AND elevators. The aesthetic clash of these monster skybridges would ABSOLUTLY destroy the fun and historic ambiance of Lower Broad's honky tonk appeal. The one skybridge Nashville needs was the one proposed some years ago over the railroad gulch. All the other locations you and others have cited are hopelessly expensive, ugly and dangerous. I can not imaging drunk tourists not being injured on the stairs or attempting stupid stunts on escalators . If Nashville wants to spend the kind of bucks to build one (or several) of these on Broadway or Demonbruem, spend it on that magnificant cable stayed one in the Gulch! Yes, if you have money for skybridges in Lower Broad, spend it in the Guldh. As an architect, my solution to the pedestrian midstreet crossover on Lower broad from 1st to about 6th would be a physical wall about 4 or 5 feet high on both sides of Broad to literally force pedestrians to use legal crossings at the street corners. Some form of removable metal panels, perhaps retractable ones even, or gates could open up the wall during events when the street is closed for massive events. Building physical walls would greatly reduce need for the kind of retractable flood wall proposed in the past. The openings and ends at cross streest could be designed for insertion of flood panels to protect buildings from floods rather than the massive street areas. This would greatly reduce the required protection to much smaller opening protections.This is similar to the flood walls in Paducah. Wouldn't it be grand if they could be painted with a history of country music or the history of that area of Nashville like the fantastic panels in Paducah? Not just street art but real works of art on the sidewalk side of the walls (painted on both sides would encourage idiots to stand in traffic to take pix with their cell phones) and if used for flood protection, the art would be damaged if painted on street sides.. Also there would be people stopping their vehicles to take pix as well. This kind of wall would have to built with substantial increases in the sidewalk widths which are desparately needed anyway. To some extent this is is functionally accomplished now with temporary barriers like K-rails but what is needed is a permanent and integral solution with safe streetscaping. Skybridges would not work 'fine' in Nashville, but perhaps physical walls would be a better solution.
  8. 2020...you need a happy pill Smeagol. Any new 30-40 story building announcement will do.
  9. Visited my old office at ESa today. Took shots from around the 8th floor.
  10. I took a drive into Nashville yesterday to visit my old office at ESa but the access was by appointment only even to get in the building lobby. I took s a few photos though of some of the projects nearby, so the trip wasn't a total loss. I see the glass instalation at the Voorhees building is still in progress. Great improvement if they could bury the utilities though. I hope that is part of the project. 805 Lea is really starting to have am impressive presence. Hard to believe I parked there a little over a year ago. The apartments going up on 6th Ave. S. are getting a significant mas s; 5 years ago, nothing in the photo existed except the crappy buildings in the foreground. The 1Hotel shows it will cover up the plain fascade of the Cambria in a much more architecturally exciting way. Most of the photos we see of the 1Hotel & Embassy Suites are showing the whole building; this one shows the urbanity at the corner of 8th & Demonbruen. I wonder if we are EVER going to get a significant project on the surface parking lot. Three corners have really great builodings. The vacant lot is like a tooth missing from a smile. The Gulch Union looks pretty nice from the Demonbrumn viaduct Lastly, the W Hotel from the parking deck at Gulch Crossing blocks off the last of the distance view in that direction. Massive but interesting fascades
  11. Took a drive into nashville from Lewisburg today to visit a relative. Took a few photos from a slightly different vantages down West End Avenue around Vandy. Then we moved over to church Street
  12. The Downtown Riverfront One of the things you can't forget if you grew up here in Nashville is the riverfront between the Jefferson Street Bridge and the new KWV Bridge. I purposely leave out the interstate bridges even though they define the inner loop of the city, they are outside the built up core of Nashville. I will cover them in a future post about the interstate highway impacts on the city. When you are little, as I was in the early 50s, you are aware of the river, but you largely are seeing it from the back seat of a moving car. There was very little residential on either bank in the 1950s. The 3 principal bridges downtown were the Woodland Street Bridge and the Shelby Street Bridge and maginally, the Jefferson Street Bridge as it was on the edge of the core downriver. After the old steamboats of the previous century no longer landed at Broad Street on the riverbanks proper, the concrete warehouse built at the foot of Broad (later calleld the Osborne-Hessey Warehouse) redefined the commerce the river. The building below the level of First Avenue was built to withstand the flooding of the Cumberland as seen in the first photograph back in 1939. What i remember is from about 1957 when this photo was taken. Even this was not high enough to operate in flooding as I recall a couple of high water floods that were above the street on Broad and flooded the Osbourne-Hessey main floor. I think this was a major influence in the decision to demolish it for Riverfront Park. I recall the demolition took a crapload of explosives over many months to clear the foundations. On the East bank, the Nashville Barge Company and fuel companies took up the land. Coal was brought in by rail and barge by the Cassetty Coal Company and the Frank Alley Coal Company which mergered in 1964, located downriver over by the Jefferson Street Bridge. Nashville Bridge had an office tower adjacent to the Shelby Street Bridge (now Siegenthaler Pedestrian Bridge). . A curiosity in 1940, a few years before I was born, was the freezing over of the Cumberland River, an event that has not happened again in my 73 years on Earth. My mom heard about it and walked across. A few who tried to drive across did not have a good result. One of the key diffences of the riverbank on the West bank was that there was no development on the riverbank when I grew up. The terraced Riverfront Park would be years later. The only thing of interest to a young boy was the shoddy Fort Nashborough replica that was a grade school must visit. Just south of the fort was a huge electrical tower that dominated the area. It was replaced with a cor-ten steel single pole several years after Riverfront Park opened. It was still a massive pole, but more aestheticaly pleasing. There was no Gay Street under the bridges. Behind the old Victorians on the Suare was a thickly forested riverbank as can be seen in this photo below. In 1956, the Mayor drove over the almost finished Victory Memorial Bridge. Aagin you can see the dense growth on the steep bluff under the Woodland Street Bridge. Not the L&C building under construction in the background. The banks down First avenue remained dirt and was a rough parking area until the construction of Riverfront Park in the early 80s In the last photo you will note that the woodland Street Bridge was rebuilt to match the Victory memorial Bridge. This was about 1960, though the photo dates from the early 70s. Throughout the remainder of the 20th century, the West Bank remained a slowly decaying industrial area. The Noashville Bridge Company was acquired by the Ingram family, who eventually moved the barge building operations to Ashland City. By the mid 90s, the entire area was in full decay and ripe for redevelopment. This would find fruition in a new stadium for the Tennessee Oilers, which thankfully were soon renamed the Tennessee Titans. The riverfront area to the north of the Square was a hodgepodge of decaying industrial buildings with cofferdam cylinder barge dock facilities. This area included the L&N railroad bridge built around 1916 and an abandoned power generation plant right behind the Old Market (Ben West Building) . It remains in ruins off 414 Gay Street by the Greenway though its steel towers were removed in th early 2000s. Down towards the jefferson Street Bridge, old industrial buildings on the riverbank were converted to residential condominiums in the eary 2000s though they were badly damaged in the March 3rd 2020 tornado and whether they will be rebuilt, I do not know. The riverfront site next to the railroad bridge is currently being developed as Watertower Condominiums. The long roofed area north of it was converted as a roofed parking lot for the Riverfront Condominiums which escaped tornado damage in March The condominums by the Jefferson Street Bridge were extensively damaged. I hope that the brick smokestak remains if they are not to be rebuilt. Returning to the riverfront at the Square, the Gay Street connector was built in the late 90s underneath the two bridges. a couple of interesting features are on this short street. First the old stone abutments of the very first bridgeover the Cumberland River were discovered and cleared of overgrowth. Just south of the Woodland Street Bridge is a staute of Timothy Demonbreum, an early founder of Nashville. It faces a small ampitheatre which is interesting but is very seldom used because of its steepness (except by the homeless for sleeping). Of course in the late 90s a great deal of change occurered on the East Bank. The vast brownfield of the derilect industial buildings were swept away with the coming of pro football a new stadium and park was created, the old Shelby Street Bridge was converted into a pedestrian bridge as it was being replaced with a spectacular new bridge to the east, the Korean War Veterans Bridge. The bridge was fitted with LED lighting shortly after and regularly displays spectacular light shows. The old Nashville Bridge Building was gutted and made into a great new ventue next to a new childrens park and marina. A sculpture was installed on the riverbank very prominently seen from the West bank, which had a terminal built for the Nashville Star. There is more than I need to list as these places and events are well covered in threads on Nashville Urban Planet sufficiently. The following photos showing current features show the great new vitality of the Nashville riverfront. The John Siegenthaler Pedestrian Bridge with the Korean War Veterns Bridge beyond. Cumberland Park by the Siegenthaler Pedestrian Bridge. I must apologise for covering the huge projects of the last 20 years so scantily, but there is so much to cover. One could write a full thread remembering so much about each individual project. i'm afraid this must remain more of an overview rather than the detailed memories that deserve to be reported more fully. There is still a great deal of work to be done in removing the West bank brownfield site of the PSC metal yards. Hopefully we will have news that apalling eyesore will be sold and will disappear soon. Hopefully the West Bank be rebuilt with new projects connecting to the Shelby Park and shelby Bottoms in the next decade.
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