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Vanderbilt University Tower and West End Dorms, 20 stories/6 stories, 340 units

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I'm a Vandy grad, more years ago than I care to admit.  I lived in two different suites in Carmichael West for two years.

Funny how impressions change.  When I lived there, Carmichel was considered rather luxurious by the standards of the day.  A six-man suite (co-ed dorms hadn't even been considered back then), two double rooms, two single rooms, bath, and kitchen/living/TV area.   Fully carpeted, and air-conditioned (not all dorms were).  What could be better?

From a current perspective, the first thing that occurs about Carmichael Towers is that they are ugly.  Brutal, plain boxes.  Their red brick coordinates with the vast majority of the campus buildings, but matching materials isn't enough.  Funny, but it didn't occur to me that the towers were ugly when I was living there.  But they are, unquestionably, and worse, they are by far the most highly visible campus structures along West End.  So I have no misgivings about their demise.  I've followed the new plans with interest, and I think they look great.

To the point made by others upthread, our football stadium is an embarrassment.  I understand that the Commodore Club was told not to initiate a fundraising drive as long as fundraising was underway for academic/residential construction.  I disagree with the necessity of such an edict, and trust it will be lifted soon.  Tear down Vanderbilt Stadium, have the football team play in the Titans' Stadium for a year or two (they owe us, after all, having played in Vanderbilt Stadium when they first moved from Houston), realign Natchez Trace to provide more room, and build a new stadium seating 50-60 thousand on the same site.  

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3 hours ago, southernnorthcarolina said:

I'm a Vandy grad, more years ago than I care to admit.  I lived in two different suites in Carmichael West for two years.

Funny how impressions change.  When I lived there, Carmichel was considered rather luxurious by the standards of the day.  A six-man suite (co-ed dorms hadn't even been considered back then), two double rooms, two single rooms, bath, and kitchen/living/TV area.   Fully carpeted, and air-conditioned (not all dorms were).  What could be better?

From a current perspective, the first thing that occurs about Carmichael Towers is that they are ugly.  Brutal, plain boxes.  Their red brick coordinates with the vast majority of the campus buildings, but matching materials isn't enough.  Funny, but it didn't occur to me that the towers were ugly when I was living there.  But they are, unquestionably, and worse, they are by far the most highly visible campus structures along West End.  So I have no misgivings about their demise.  I've followed the new plans with interest, and I think they look great.

To the point made by others upthread, our football stadium is an embarrassment.  I understand that the Commodore Club was told not to initiate a fundraising drive as long as fundraising was underway for academic/residential construction.  I disagree with the necessity of such an edict, and trust it will be lifted soon.  Tear down Vanderbilt Stadium, have the football team play in the Titans' Stadium for a year or two (they owe us, after all, having played in Vanderbilt Stadium when they first moved from Houston), realign Natchez Trace to provide more room, and build a new stadium seating 50-60 thousand on the same site.  

50-60 thousand seat stadium?!?! Are you kidding? 40 is right about where it should be. They average probably around the low 30’s, and the national trend is smaller for stadiums.

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3 hours ago, subkyle said:

50-60 thousand seat stadium?!?! Are you kidding? 40 is right about where it should be. They average probably around the low 30’s, and the national trend is smaller for stadiums.

Something similar to the new Baylor stadium is what they should go for...but even a bit smaller.  The Baylor stadium seats around 45k.  I would do 35-40k for Vandy.

 

 

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Edited by titanhog
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subkyle and titanhog --

Point taken.  50-60K is probably an overreach for Vandy.  Then again, the SEC might be an overreach.  Realistically, Vanderbilt should be playing Tulane, Rice, and Wake Forest, rather than Florida, Georgia, and Alabama.  But the SEC pays big bucks, so it's hard to walk away from.  Take the money, and hope to be reasonably competitive, and spring an upset once in a while.

I have no doubt that a 50-60K stadium, nicely done with individual seats rather than benches, and luxury boxes, might sell out for a couple of conference games a year, but that would be mostly due to  opposing teams which travel well.  Nashville is, of course, a fun destination for visitors, as opposed to, say, Starkville or Fayetteville.  Non-conference games, however, would have lots of empty seats.  So, I'll settle for 40K (roughly the same as the current stadium's capacity, but 40K individual seats plus boxes would require a bigger footprint and/or more height than the existing 40K bench seats).  Whatever the capacity of a new stadium, whether built on the same site or elsewhere, it would be an epic improvement over the dank, dismal, disgraceful dump the Commodores now call home.

Apologies for dragging this thread away from its topic, the West End construction, which is wonderful to see.

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On ‎2019‎-‎01‎-‎25 at 8:20 PM, southernnorthcarolina said:

Realistically, Vanderbilt should be playing Tulane, Rice, and Wake Forest, rather than Florida, Georgia, and Alabama.

Magnolia League!

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On 1/27/2019 at 12:46 PM, PruneTracy said:

Magnolia League!

Where can I buy some swag?

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1 hour ago, BnaBreaker said:

I'm sure I'm in the minority here, but I'm actually going to miss the Carmichael Towers when they're gone.  They aren't conventionally attractive by any means, but I've always thought that they provided some much needed urban muscle to a street sorely needing it.  

Don't worry, we've got some good muscle coming up soon, a bit towards downtown. (Broadwest, Graduate, apartment tower)

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On 11/19/2018 at 4:40 AM, uberkarnie said:

While those athletic departments bring in a lot of money, they don't actually make that much profit. I think Alabama made like $175 million in revenue from athletics last year, but only $15 million in profit. Overall, only 24 athletic departments nationwide made more than they spent in 2017. That profit doesn't go back into the University either. These are minor league sports franchises and while I love to go and cheer for my teams, I think it is clear from the way many of the larger schools treat their student athletes that they have misplaced priorities. Vanderbilt students have an incredible quality of life. The condition of one facility for one sport(granted it is the flagship sport) is not negatively impacting their collegiate experience. It's fun for SEC fans to pile on Vanderbilt; I get it. I just think it's ill-informed. The current model of collegiate athletics is a dinosaur in several ways and its long term viability is being questioned by many. I know there are people at Vanderbilt who value athletics, but also want to move cautiously until they have a better handle on how some future changes might impact the industry.  All this aside, the Chancellor has said that fundraising is a primary consideration in the hiring of the next athletic director and a capital campaign for the department will be undertaken in the future. Anyway, I'm happy with how the University is conducting itself in recent years. Look at this and other recent residential buildings as an example of how the school is holding itself to a higher standard.

This is what I've been saying for years. I *wish* my Alma Mater of UT would conduct themselves like Vandy when it comes to their attitude to the place athletics has on campus.

Edit: holy crap, I didn't mean to comment on a 3 month old post. I really should catch up on threads more often...

Edited by Nathan_in_the_UK
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Just my opinion, but I don't think the 6 story base for the new buildings at Vanderbilt will be proven to be tall enough.  Seems like 8-10 would have been a better fit.  The footprint of these places is huge and it just seems that a smaller, taller version would have been the answer.

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On 2/19/2019 at 10:18 AM, wreynol4 said:

Just my opinion, but I don't think the 6 story base for the new buildings at Vanderbilt will be proven to be tall enough.  Seems like 8-10 would have been a better fit.  The footprint of these places is huge and it just seems that a smaller, taller version would have been the answer.

It's my understanding that scale is an important consideration in the campus redevelopment master plan. They could have solved some existing housing shortages by designing any of the recent projects taller, but the long term goal is about fostering a cohesive architectural environment. I think it will make more sense when this project and Greek Row are finished and designs for the next faze of redevelopment pending demolition of Branscomb, the Morgan/Lewis towers and Chaffin/Mayfield (including the 25th ave garage) are finally released. 

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I have wondered about the capacity of the college halls. IIRC, all the towers house just under 1000 students. And I understand each of the 3 clusters of dorms to be built will house about 330 students. So the three of them will replace what will be lost from the Towers. So my question is how many students will be housed in the tower? 

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It's my understanding that scale is an important consideration in the campus redevelopment master plan. They could have solved some existing housing shortages by designing any of the recent projects taller, but the long term goal is about fostering a cohesive architectural environment. I think it will make more sense when this project and Greek Row are finished and designs for the next faze of redevelopment pending demolition of Branscomb, the Morgan/Lewis towers and Chaffin/Mayfield (including the 25th ave garage) are finally released. 


Boy if they rebuild that block bounded by a Childrens Way, 24th, 25th, and Highland, that will make a tremendous difference.

Question ... if they lose the 25th Ave garage, what is the plan to relocate all that parking?

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