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The Gulch Projects

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1 hour ago, dxfret said:

What has happened to the plans to build a pedestrian bridge from the Gulch to SoBro?  It seems that this was announced years ago, yet nothing has materialized.  Any info?

I think CSX has slowed it down, and politically it’s not good press to be the mayor authorizing this construction during budgetary issues

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20 hours ago, nashvylle said:

I think CSX has slowed it down, and politically it’s not good press to be the mayor authorizing this construction during budgetary issues

If Cooper wins the runoff, is this project likely to get nixed since he's vowed to spread the wealth away from downtown?

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I used to think this bridge was necessary, but with the stairs attached to Demonbreun at Gulch Crossing, I don't think this should be anywhere close to a priority for the city. I'm all good if the downtown businesses want to put up the cash for it. 

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13 minutes ago, Jamie Hall said:

If Cooper wins the runoff, is this project likely to get nixed since he's vowed to spread the wealth away from downtown?

It's hard to say. I tried to ask him specifically about it a while back but he went off on an old man rant.

He is very much in favor of increasing green space, greenways, and sidewalk connectivity so I would not say it is a sure thing. The bridge has also been VE'ed to death so it is not as much of a financial hit as it was before (the engineering for the old design(s) being a sunk cost at this point).

I would say the major uncertainty with the bridge is the long-term status of Kayne Yard. It doesn't make much sense to build a bridge over land that could be developed in the near future; CSX has shot down purchase proposals so far but the fact that they are willing to consider it is more telling than anything else. Metro has a new consultant on board but if Cooper is going to do anything it would be to stop work until there is closure with the rail yard.

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With the way the areas have developed in the past 5 years I think if the pedestrian bridge is built it would be used more by people in SoBro heading to the Gulch instead of for its original purpose of linking residents in the Gulch to SoBro.

As someone who works in and also lives near SoBro, I go to the Gulch far more often to meet up with friends who live there or clients who work there, than they come to me in SoBro. The Gulch is a much more established and fully fleshed-out neighborhood, especially for residents (retail, full service restaurants, gyms, etc.), while SoBro is heavily catered to the 9-5 business crowd and/or convention-goers/tourists/special events.

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It would definitely help connect the two neighborhoods.

Explaining to people how to walk around is always interesting. Walk across the bridge and then there is a little set of steps to get down there. 

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23 hours ago, dxfret said:

What has happened to the plans to build a pedestrian bridge from the Gulch to SoBro?  It seems that this was announced years ago, yet nothing has materialized.  Any info?

I think that there are other factors that are keeping this project on hold than  speculations on political aspects concerning the mayor.  Two new developments have occurred since the original bridge was first proposed., whether or not they have a chance of success.  Also there was quite a bit of blowback when the magnificent cable stayed design was nixed in favour of a more prosaic trussed structure...which I though rather ugly.  Mainly, there has emerged possibility that CSX may actually abandon yard operations in the Gulch and reduce the number of tracks to 3 or hopefully even 2.  This would create  developable and marketable real estate  on Pine Street.. as well as between Nashville Yards and Asurion.  There has already been investigation by developers of the triangular plot from Pine to the bridge over 8th.  Narrowing of the Yard would create quite a different plot configuration of the land.  More importantly, it would obliviate the need for a very difficult design for the Pine Street end of the bridge as well as shortening the span required.  This has huge cost saving implications.  At the other end, the Station District project has also  created new opportunities  affecting the bridge design.  It is yet to be seen whether or not the first tower of this ambitious project will begin construction in the near future as we are led to believe (and hope for).  At any rate, either or both of these projects impact the design of any pedestrian bridge to be built and surely, if either criteria changes from the current bridge designs, the bridge will have to be completely redesigned to a more cost effective one.  And hopefully, I might say, a more appealing design than the that presently offered.

Edited by Baronakim
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“Explaining to people how to walk around is always interesting.” 

There’s always Google maps. (It’s a sixteen minute walk from the Omni Hotel to Biscuit Love. How much is it worth to cut three minutes off that walk?)

808A3858-8C39-4101-858D-CA80156C928A.jpeg

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1 minute ago, donNdonelson2 said:

“Explaining to people how to walk around is always interesting.” 

There’s always Google maps. (It’s a sixteen minute walk from the Omni Hotel to Biscuit Love. How much is it worth to cut three minutes off that walk?)

808A3858-8C39-4101-858D-CA80156C928A.jpeg

The reality of the situation and the impetus for the pedestrian bridge is the fact that routing visitors by the large gatherings of homeless on 8th Avenue sidewalks and the nasty walk under the railroad bridge (which is tantamount to begging for a mugging in the evening) is completely undesirable.  Rather the routing by the new 805 Lea tower and Cummings Station is the more desirable  solution.   Of course this is ugly but starkly realistic in human terms.  Your 3 minutes is irrevelant in this case.

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Is there a new gathering spot for the homeless between the Music City Center and the JWMarriott that I’m missing? Have they relocated from Church Street Park? (You are going to encounter homeless people and panhandling everywhere downtown, unfortunately. They will be on a new $20million pedestrian bridge, too!)

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4 minutes ago, Baronakim said:

No, not new at all my friend.  Maybe you have spent too much time fixating on Tony G and the Church Street Park to notice the 30 to 40 homeless usually at Drexel Street and 8th Avenue S. sitting on the sidewalks of Drexel and 8th overflowing from the Mission and Room at the Inn.  It has been that way for years.  The area at Music City Center and the JWMarriot is considerably more upscale and less attractive for the homeless to hang out comfortably.   And the pedestrian bridge never was $20 million either.  It was originally $18 million reduced to about $12 million with the current design.  Reducing the span and redesign should allow it to be built for under $10 million.

Or they can walk down Demonbreun to Gulch Crossing and get to the Gulch that way.

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16 hours ago, AronG said:

Homeless dudes aside, a stroll across a pedestrian bridge would be infinitely more pleasant than hoofing it on Demonbreun or 8th/Gleaves. The vibe on both of those sidewalks is decidedly pedestrian hostile. Narrow sidewalks with cars whizzing by inches away, etc. Investing in pedestrian infrastructure like this (which is funded using the property taxes from the areas around it) makes sense for plenty of reasons other than shaving 3 minutes off a particular route.

Not tp mention trying to cross at the Round-about or in the crosswalk at Drexel. Drivers DO NOT stop for the flashing pedestrian crossing lights and are going a good 10 above the 35 mph speed limit.

Metro cops are pretty worthless when it comes to traffic enforcement in this city. I think that is probably due to low moral, bad leadership and being undermanned. They are quick to write a parking ticket though.

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On 8/25/2019 at 1:59 PM, nashvylle said:

I think CSX has slowed it down, and politically it’s not good press to be the mayor authorizing this construction during budgetary issues

If I had this conversation with someone from the board, I apologize for the redundant information. I was talking about the CSX land deal for a new development along Pine Street (which would also shorten the bridge) and I was told that the deal had fallen through and the CSX tracks were going to remain for the time being. That's not to say another potential partner comes along, but that will certainly slow the bridge  project down. 

FWIW, I believe the bridge is an essential part of infrastructure that definitely should be built. I have no idea how to fund it, but I would prefer a private/public partnership (*cough* station district owner *cough*) to help fund the bridge. 

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2 hours ago, PaulChinetti said:

NEIGHBORHOODS!!! (eye roll)

Whatever the hell it means. I seriously don't know what it means.

Sounds like Purcell 2.0? 

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Does anyone have an update on the Voorhes building?  I think that would be posted in this thread, right?

Never mind.  Just found the new thread @markhollin started on August 20.  Love this development!

Edited by Mr_Bond
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On 8/27/2019 at 8:54 AM, Bos2Nash said:

FWIW, I believe the bridge is an essential part of infrastructure that definitely should be built. I have no idea how to fund it, but I would prefer a private/public partnership (*cough* station district owner *cough*) to help fund the bridge. 

A bridge that saves tourists 5-10 minutes is essential infrastructure? Come on. The Gulch isn't some sort of beleaguered food desert 45 minutes from anything. As 8th Ave and Demonbreun continues to develop, this bridge is less and less valuable. 

Now if Gulch business and Station District want to come together, then by all means. Build five bridges if you want, and a tunnel or two for rainy days. 

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21 minutes ago, Craiger said:

A bridge that saves tourists 5-10 minutes is essential infrastructure? Come on. The Gulch isn't some sort of beleaguered food desert 45 minutes from anything. As 8th Ave and Demonbreun continues to develop, this bridge is less and less valuable. 

Now if Gulch business and Station District want to come together, then by all means. Build five bridges if you want, and a tunnel or two for rainy days. 

It won’t just be tourists... and this is coming from someone who really wants bridges everywhere, not just at this location, but understands why now is not the time to build it. 

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2 minutes ago, nashvylle said:

It won’t just be tourists... and this is coming from someone who really wants bridges everywhere, not just at this location, but understands why now is not the time to build it. 

You're right I was being a bit disingenuous with the tourist comment, but my point is that it is really just a small time saver. The Gulch is and should be it's own neighborhood with it's own amenities. Heck, it's one of the few urban neighborhoods with it's own grocery store already. It doesn't need to be 5 minutes "closer" to downtown to for anything other than a small bit of convenience for a small subset of the city's population. 

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