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smeagolsfree

Boro trying to attract upscale developments

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I think its a good idea to put standards and guidelines in place for commercial development similar to what Hendersonville and Franklin do; however on the residential end I think there needs to be more flexibility so as not to price out lower income residents or slow afrodable/mid-level residential construction, which is pretty key for a fast growing city like the "Boro" to sustain its growth.

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murfreesboro does need some more upscale living areas. blackman and the area off of thompson ln are really the only areas in murfreesboro with higher end houses. murfreesboro can definatly handle these kinds of houses. the city really is booming right now with all different kinds of classes moving in (low, middle and high). i'm not sure if i'd like to see any more midrises downtown now. i used too, but after living here for a while and hanging out in the square, i think they would just ruin the atmosphere. but if that does mean keeping sprawling office complexes to a minimum, then i say go for it. but tastefully.

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murfreesboro does need some more upscale living areas. blackman and the area off of thompson ln are really the only areas in murfreesboro with higher end houses. murfreesboro can definatly handle these kinds of houses. the city really is booming right now with all different kinds of classes moving in (low, middle and high). i'm not sure if i'd like to see any more midrises downtown now. i used too, but after living here for a while and hanging out in the square, i think they would just ruin the atmosphere. but if that does mean keeping sprawling office complexes to a minimum, then i say go for it. but tastefully.

Agreed. But there is plenty of small office/wharehouse space off from the square that could be bulldozed and made into something beneficial for the office market here. Stick some midrises around the square, not on it.

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^ I agree, Lexy. Those old warehouses are really in poor shape (on the outside at least). I'd love to see something more attractive go in there, so see something attractive made from the existing structures.

By the way, here's a similar article from yesterday's Daily News Journal:

http://www.dnj.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?A.../603260327/1002.

There's also an opinion piece from the DNJ here:

http://www.dnj.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?A.../603260335/1014.

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Agreed. But there is plenty of small office/wharehouse space off from the square that could be bulldozed and made into something beneficial for the office market here. Stick some midrises around the square, not on it.

exactly. that area around where club inferno (or whatever it's called now, sweetwater maybe?) would be a good place for some midrises.

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The more recently developed commercial stretches of Murfreesboro, and many of the older ones like Broad and Memorial, are the embodiment of the term 'hodge-podge'. Areas like S Church Street, Old Fort Parkway, etc. were obviously developed without any guidelines for setback, materials/finishes, allowed business type, etc. As the DNJ pieces make pretty clear, the general population of Murfreesboro doesn't seem to want design guidelines if it means costing more to property owners. Being born and raised there, I find that pretty sad, but I'm not surprised. It seems standards of beauty and consistency of the built environment are taken for granted in suburbs in general. I agree that the area around the square has the most potential. Hopefully some forward-thinking visionaries will see that and choose to to build thoughtfully, with or without guidelines.

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On the topic of Murfreesboro and more upscale devlopment, what does everyone think of the Mainstreet Homes communities? Two of them, Stratford Hall and Winslow Park are located in the Boro. I haven't seen Winslow Park in real life, but I did drive through Stratford Hall the other day, and was quite impressed. No two hourse are the same, there really are tree-lined sidewalks, the houses feature very traditional designs on small lots with alleys behind for car access. Here's a link to their site from which you can link over to pictures and renderings:

http://www.gomainstreethomes.com/index.htm

What do y'all think? Are these developments good or bad for the city?

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On the topic of Murfreesboro and more upscale devlopment, what does everyone think of the Mainstreet Homes communities? Two of them, Stratford Hall and Winslow Park are located in the Boro. I haven't seen Winslow Park in real life, but I did drive through Stratford Hall the other day, and was quite impressed. No two hourse are the same, there really are tree-lined sidewalks, the houses feature very traditional designs on small lots with alleys behind for car access. Here's a link to their site from which you can link over to pictures and renderings:

http://www.gomainstreethomes.com/index.htm

What do y'all think? Are these developments good or bad for the city?

Based on a quick look at the map on their website, I would say these are good and bad. It is commendable that they are emulating a traditional urban neighborhood fabric. It is bad that they are using the same old, horrible suburban cul-de-sac mistake of not meshing with the rest of the grid. The whole thing becomes another feeder to artery road gridlock. I may have just looked at some bad examples; maybe they don't do this at all of their sites.

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Honestly my biggest complaint with Stratford Hall is its location. A good bit of the stretch of Rutherford that its on is kind of a hodge podge of developments and styles.

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The problem with Stratford Hall is that there was never a 'grid' to connect to. Ideally, it would have been the catalyst for a much larger development [like many now being built], but it wasn't. The way Murfreesboro has been developed the past 10+ years, nearly uncontrolled and mostly unplanned, I have little hope for the guidelines being implemented now. Not to be a pessimist, but it's almost too little too late. However I'm glad that the city is recognizing the need for solid design guidelines, and I hope the community will see the value in the plan, even it means a slightly higher cost. The parts of the city I like the most are the old ones. One thing I'm pleased with is the new businesses that have moved in around the square and nearby. What I really want to see happen is new, downtown multi-family residential near the square. It would be a new direction for Murfreesboro, as it is dominated by sprawling subdivisions and apartment complexes [not forgetting the previously-mentioned older neighborhoods.] I realize that things are demand-driven, and by gosh people love their strip malls. Or do they? I guess we are somewhat at the mercy of developers as to how commercial space is delivered. If you happen to own a small piece of commercially-zoned land on a major road, I guess your choices of what to build are strip mall, car wash, gas station or fast food. At any rate, I think the growth there is great, but was largely underestimated.

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^ In terms of the older parts of town near downtown, I hope the city hasn't abandoned its plans to reviatalize the area. They used to prominently display a link to the plan for what they called the "Maney Ave Overlay District." It was a pretty throughly laid out plan to unify the look of the area and attract developers. It may have been pushed aside for a while so that the city can focus on the city-wide design guidelines.

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I would LOVE to see some urban loft type developments in downtown. Conversion of some of the old buildings upper floors and even new construction (done tastefully in regards to the historic structures already in place) would be welcomed IMO. That would make downtown even more fun to go to and encourage a positive image for the city. I do believe that at some point, it will happen.

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Yes, there are some higher end neigborhoods built or under construction:

Type: Status: Location/Plans:

1.Stratford Hall Completed Rutherford Boulevard

2.Mirabella Completed Pitts Lane

3.Breckenridge Completed Thompson Lane

4.Jamison Place Near Completion Hanes Drive

5.Marymont Under contract with the city of Murfreesboro, planned historic design with mixed use,

residential, greenway, golfcourse, to encompass the Marymont House which is to become

a bed and breakfast hotel

Highway 96

6.Indian Hills Completed South Church street

7.Three Rivers Under Contract with the city of Murfreesboro, planned mixed use, residential, town

square, mall, ampitheatre, Class A office space, artificial lake, & interconnected walking

trails

8.Blackman Farms/Blackman Area

Under Construction Fortress, Highway 96, Brinkley

9.Berkshire Completed Beesley

10.Maney Avenue Revitalization

Proposed Downtown Murfreesboro, planned mixed use, residential, multi-

family, 3-5 story apartments/condos built to street with tree lined streets, wide side-

walks, elegant lighting, crosswalk signals, retail space

The thing is which many of you have mentioned before is that there has not been much, if any, emphasis put on cohesion between neighborhoods, grid pattern streets, elimination of cul-de-sacs, connection between new developments and those that already exist (ie. medical center parkway v.s. the current downtown), and lastly, aesthetics (hogde-podge vs. a logically and conviently planned neighborhood (not just a subdivision with a few strip malls).

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