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Guest 5th & Main Urbanite

Nashville City Center 2. Is it finally underway?

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Back in 1989 I remember seeing the two models of the towers across the street in a window where the Oshi flower shop is now. It may have been the building next door. In any case, there are a few possibilities for this project and here is what we know so far:

 

1) This could be only a parking garage.

 

2) Later they could add 10-25 floors depending on what is needed.

 

3) This could be the long awaited 40 story twin, or it could be a scaled down version.

 

4) This could also be a residential building. Richard Fletcher has mentioned this before in the print media.

 

5) There is a 5% vacancy rate in the class A office space, so we need more class A space.

 

However, there are a lot of scenarios here. If the current Regions Tower is converted to residential, do we need another residential tower? Will West End Summit and The Gulch Crossings office buildings take potential clients away from the CBD? Although HCA and Parillion are taking up most of WES, there will still be other space available.

 

If NCC2 is built, what about 505 CST? If The 511 Group does residential, will Tony build the Sobro?

 

We will know in a year when the garage gets to street level. I suspect by then an announcement will be made. I do think in my humble opinion, a second tower will be built as soon as the garage reaches street level. It is curious  the crane is so high, however; the crane operator does need to be high in such a confined space.

 

There is also question about the other lot that faces the Methodist church. Will a tower be built there as well? Will the red brick building that addresses 6th and Church be razed, or will it be part of another development plan?

 

This block of 6th Avenue is one of the most important blocks in the CBD. My hope is that every surface lot on Church Street will be developed at some point, but the NCC2 development will quickly revitalize the entire area. It will also effect Tony's Signature lot as well. This development could be the start of something very big.

 

We will have to wait and see.

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243 views and no replies. Mod's, I guess you can delete this thread and we can discuss it in Bits and Pieces, or in the CBD thread.

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I think you said it all John. We are going to have to wait and see. No one has heard anything solid. We know that if it starts to rise above grade then something is happening, but they may wait till the last minute to announce. I would bet they are marketing it but we have not heard anything on that front either.

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I think Ron is right...you pretty much covered all of the bases as far as possibilities.

Personally, I think they will stop with the garage (for now)...but that's based on nothing more than my gut. I haven't heard anything either way...I just think they would at least have floated some sort of proposal if they are planning to add a tower on top (again, in the short term). I don't know what the end date is on that garage, but it seems like if they were putting anything of size on top, they'd have to float something past the planning commission, would they not? And if they do plan to do that, wouldn't they want to do that before they get close to the surface?

I could be wrong here. I just think it will be "just a parking garage" for a few years. The fact that it is below ground is certainly encouraging, though.

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If it was built, and with the original design, would it be something exciting to see? Do you think they would change the design?

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If it was built, and with the original design, would it be something exciting to see? Do you think they would change the design?

 

Certain aspects would change for sure, but the overall design could stay the same.

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I suppose you are right. I have been waiting for the "twin" since 1989! I always thought this would be the project that would have catapulted Nashville to the next level of skyscrapers and architectural design. Nashville still needs a true iconic skyscraper. We need something that people come and see. We need an observation deck. We need something like this:

 

http://the-shard.com/overview/

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I don't think if NCC2 had gone up on schedule it would've been the gateway building to that proverbial "next level." While the design was fine by me, it certainly wasn't groundbreaking. If anything, it would've been the "Batman" building, and that is an iconic design and departure from Nashville's prior highrises. Personally, I'd still like to see the Signature go up in all its 1,000-foot tall+ glory and the 505 CST go up on the Hotel Tulane site.

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I would of thought the Batman building would be defined as iconic for Nashville. That building, to me, defined Nashville's Skyline when it was built. I know many on here are not a huge fan of it, but it really keeps sets our skyline apart from generic buildings.

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I don't think if NCC2 had gone up on schedule it would've been the gateway building to that proverbial "next level." While the design was fine by me, it certainly wasn't groundbreaking. If anything, it would've been the "Batman" building, and that is an iconic design and departure from Nashville's prior highrises. Personally, I'd still like to see the Signature go up in all its 1,000-foot tall+ glory and the 505 CST go up on the Hotel Tulane site.

 Touche'

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I would of thought the Batman building would be defined as iconic for Nashville. That building, to me, defined Nashville's Skyline when it was built. I know many on here are not a huge fan of it, but it really keeps sets our skyline apart from generic buildings.

 

 

I think we are now beyond the ATT Tower. The Pinnacle, although lacking in height, is a world class design, just too short. Anything built short of the Pinnacle in height and design to me is a waste. I personally will be disappointed if the NCC2 is not the 40 story 596 foot version they planned on building in the first place.

 

Remember, skyscrapers not only conserve space, but they are sculptural and artistic as well. They express the culture of the people living in the city. (I don't want to get into the Washington DC argument, I know; no towers but amazing density and that is iconic as well. The same argument for Portland gets a bit worn too. Yes, beautiful city, but it has many limitations.) The L&C Tower not withstanding,  we have not had anything remotely sculptural and iconic done since the L&C Tower with the exception of ATT and Pinnacle. 3 towers in 50+ years is not something to be proud about.

 

Most of the other towers we have are unexpressive and bland, although the Snodgrass does have a quiet elegance in its post modern minimalism.

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It's unfortunate we never had any substantial skyscrapers (even if just 2 or 3) built during the 1920s-40s period. Memphis put up the Sterick and the Lincoln-American highrises. I would've loved Art Decos in our downtown (although the Sudekum Building was, it was too short and a somewhat stripped-down version) or even a magnificent Second Empire like the demolished Singer Building in NYC.

 

BTW, to augment my comments from earlier, perhaps it wouldn't be such a bad thing for 505 CST & Signature to switch places. A residential tower like Sig might work better at the Tulane site with the 505, being more commercial, at the old Cain-Sloan locale.

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Agreed Fieldmarshaldj. The fact Mobile, AL with a population of 198,000 can support a 750 foot tower and Nashville with 650,000 cannot have a tower anywhere near that height is beyond me. We have 1.7 million in our CSA and 1.45 million in our MSA, and it amazes me we cannot get our office towers filled downtown. 

 

You mean to tell me out of 1.7 million people, Tony G or anyone else cannot find 500 to live in another downtown condo tower?

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Did you know this wasn't the first time Mobile beat us to the punch ? When the 409-foot L&C was finished in 1957, it was the tallest office tower in the entire southeast (including Atlanta and Miami). Atlanta beat us in 1961 when they finished One Park Tower (30 feet taller) and kept going on from there. But Mobile in 1965 put up the RSA Bank Trust, which was 424 feet, giving them a taller tower than Nashville for 4 years until the National Life & Accident went up in 1969 (now the Snodgrass). When the 745-foot RSA Battle Tower went up in Mobile in 2006, they beat us again (and New Orleans, too) and we've yet to eclipse them.

 

However, it is worth pointing out that despite its height, the Battle House Tower doesn't have nearly as many floors as one would expect, that being just 35, only 1 floor more than its sister, Bank Trust.

 

Even if 505 CST gets built, I believe it would still be shorter than the Battle Tower (more floors, but less height).

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Did you know this wasn't the first time Mobile beat us to the punch ? When the 409-foot L&C was finished in 1957, it was the tallest office tower in the entire southeast (including Atlanta and Miami). Atlanta beat us in 1961 when they finished One Park Tower (30 feet taller) and kept going on from there. But Mobile in 1965 put up the RSA Bank Trust, which was 424 feet, giving them a taller tower than Nashville for 4 years until the National Life & Accident went up in 1969 (now the Snodgrass). When the 745-foot RSA Battle Tower went up in Mobile in 2006, they beat us again (and New Orleans, too) and we've yet to eclipse them.

 

However, it is worth pointing out that despite its height, the Battle House Tower doesn't have nearly as many floors as one would expect, that being just 35, only 1 floor more than its sister, Bank Trust.

 

Even if 505 CST gets built, I believe it would still be shorter than the Battle Tower (more floors, but less height).

I am still amazed why Nashville is still so afraid of height! Tony Giarratana is the only developer to ever propose height except for 3 cases. The 47 story Ryman Center, the 48 story tower that would have gone where TPAC is now, and the 45 story tower which was to go behind Hume Fogg where the Genesco Building was. In Fact the James Robertson Hotel was to come down as well for another 45 story tower. So there were 4, not 3. If you add the 40 story twin of NCC, that would make 5. None were ever built.

 

In our 100 year modern built environment history considering we were a transportation hub, an insurance capital, a banking center, a printing center, and an entertainment giant, we have never built a large tower. If the ATT Tower did not have the "fake" height with the empty cap and spire, the building would be 527 feet or less. Hardly a skyscraper.

 

As it stands, Tony G. is our ONLY HOPE. OUR ONLY HOPE for a real skyscraper. Since guys like Pat Emery suck all the office business to Cool Springs, our hope of a real office tower goes with it. I think Nashville may have peaked in 1957 with the L&C Tower or in 1970 with the National Life Tower. No one else has had any kahuna's since to do anything bold and daring.

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Height is overrated.  The cities in this world that are most obsessed with skyscraper height are almost always the ones that have very little else to be proud of.

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Here we go, turning into a "Nashville is afraid of heights" discussion. I do get a good laugh at the Mobile comparison and saying the RSA Tower is amazing, yet Batman is "faking height." Yeah, never mind that small piece of the RSA tower that's over 200ft tall that is unoccupied and just fancy decoration.

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I am still amazed why Nashville is still so afraid of height! Tony Giarratana is the only developer to ever propose height except for 3 cases. The 47 story Ryman Center, the 48 story tower that would have gone where TPAC is now, and the 45 story tower which was to go behind Hume Fogg where the Genesco Building was. In Fact the James Robertson Hotel was to come down as well for another 45 story tower. So there were 4, not 3. If you add the 40 story twin of NCC, that would make 5. None were ever built.

 

In our 100 year modern built environment history considering we were a transportation hub, an insurance capital, a banking center, a printing center, and an entertainment giant, we have never built a large tower. If the ATT Tower did not have the "fake" height with the empty cap and spire, the building would be 527 feet or less. Hardly a skyscraper.

 

As it stands, Tony G. is our ONLY HOPE. OUR ONLY HOPE for a real skyscraper. Since guys like Pat Emery suck all the office business to Cool Springs, our hope of a real office tower goes with it. I think Nashville may have peaked in 1957 with the L&C Tower or in 1970 with the National Life Tower. No one else has had any kahuna's since to do anything bold and daring.

 

Of course, if those 40-something story skyscrapers had gone up in the '80s, it's highly likely that South Central Bell (Batman/AT&T) would never have been built and we'd have been stuck with a Dallasesque glut of office space that would've taken 25 years to absorb. That's the downside to throwing up the big boys left and right. Plus, a lot of those buildings would've probably been bland and uninspiring in their architecture styles to boot.

 

Still, I wouldn't be so harsh on Batman being "hardly" a skyscraper. When it went up, it was pretty inspiring for us, and finally in breaking the 500 (and 600)-foot barrier that had been stood since 1957 (when we broke the 300 & 400-foot barrier with L&C). I'm sure we'll break the 700, 800 & 900 within the next 15 years or so, barring disaster.

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Height is overrated.  The cities in this world that are most obsessed with skyscraper height are almost always the ones that have very little else to be proud of.

I respectfully disagree with this statement. It is true cities like Charlotte, Oklahoma City and others that have buildings in the 700-900 foot range may be lacking in some respect, but London, New York, Chicago, San Francisco, and many others have a lot to offer. The fact is at some point Nashville will have to go up. There are only so many surface lots available, and with the amount of people moving to downtown at some point, I can see as many as 20-30 high rise condominium and apartment towers being built in the next 20 years.

 

I don't want to hear the Portland Oregon and Washington DC arguments either. Those cities are having to build up because they are out of room. I recently saw on one of the cable channels there are zero lots available in DC, so they are having to add floors on top of existing structures. Paris, London, Edinburgh, Zurich, Frankfurt, Berlin, Birmingham, Geneva, Madrid, Barcelona, Manchester, Moscow, St. Petersburgh and many other European cities are now having to go up.

 

We have 7 billion people on the planet now, and it is becoming unsustainable to have people live out on the countryside and rural areas. We cannot populate the entire planet. We need natural areas to grow food, graze cattle,  and the like. Areas like Cool Springs, Brentwood have used giant swaths of land on 3-6 story buildings, and now they are built out with horrific traffic problems and no place else to go.

 

It is simply inevitable. People are flocking to the cities because of the costs associated with owning an automobile and the distance out to the suburbs. If we had light rail mass transit out to the suburbs, it may be different. We don't, so therefore people are going to have to move into the cities making them more dense. This is not about building skyscrapers for decorative reasons, but out of necessity. It seems a lot of people hate skyscrapers on this forum which is okay, but no one builds height for the sake of height. Height is not overrated, it is a necessity. All I am saying is, if people were not afraid in the 1980's, we may have more density than we do now. 

 

The original height of the Renaissance Hotel, then the Stouffer, was 42 stories and around 600 feet. Ted Welch told me they had no confidence back then the condos would sell, so they cut the building to 31 stories and 385 feet. He told me this in 2006 or so, and he said he regretted it ever since, because when the building was finished in 1987, a decade later Tony G. builds the Cumberland and the rest is history.

 

Nashville cannot be Murfreesboro and waste miles of pasture and farm land on generic small buildings that increase the carbon footprint and cause more traffic.

 

If you don't like skyscrapers, I can respect that. Older skyscrapers are a large cause of pollution like the automobile, but with todays structures, that is no longer an issue. Today's skyscraper is not your fathers or grandfathers skyscraper.

 

So yes, it is time for Nashville to hit 700 feet, however any decent height on a surface lot is okay with me, but anything short of 700 feet on 5th and Church or 9th and Church (the hotel Tulane site) would be a complete waste.

 

My mantra is "Surface lots suck." Anything to get rid of a surface lot is okay with me.

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^I know DC has discussed removing their strict height limits. Have they made any substantive moves towards actually doing so as of late ? One wonders what the city would've looked like had they never had them.

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^I know DC has discussed removing their strict height limits. Have they made any substantive moves towards actually doing so as of late ? One wonders what the city would've looked like had they never had them.

Not sure if this is true, but I have that buildings in D.C. aren't allowed to surpass the Washington Monument.  Does anyone know this to be a fact?

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Not sure if this is true, but I have that buildings in D.C. aren't allowed to surpass the Washington Monument.  Does anyone know this to be a fact?

 

Oh, no. Not that high (otherwise there'd be many 500-footers in DC). Basically, the height limit is at or around 130 feet (a shorties' delight). This explains in a bit more detail...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heights_of_Buildings_Act_of_1910

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