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The Matthews, NC Thread
I couldn't find a thread about Matthews, or generally about the small towns right around CLT, so I'm making this for all things regarding my home town of Matthews! Is anyone else from the area, or live there? There is some development happening now and down the road, but I haven't seen any info on it on the boards or on the development maps.
First, I noticed another parcel in the North End district, right along N Trade St, is now under construction, but I can't find any info about it anywhere. Anyone have any insight about it? I'm loving how North End is looking and feeling. As they continue to connect more and more streets around downtown they're really expanding the urban footprint.
Also, the Silver Line talks have made me interested in how Matthews will develop its eventual TOD areas. Anyone think that once the Silver Line gets funded (God/Allah/Ganesh-willing), Matthews will have the potential to become a mini-urban center outside of CLT? Like Sommerville, MA or something? Food for thought.
Another is one I don't know how to feel about. Plantation Estates (Which has a big retirement community complex up Fullwood Ln on 51) is expanding onto the wooded parcel across the street from the big Methodist Church on S Trade St, behind that ever-present brick wall that's always been there. Here's another story that talks about the local concerns. Okay, sure, I understand. The Boomers are aging, they want places to feel at home. And elderly citizens are a stable tax base to have in a municipality (no kids to use up the public services/schools), as well as wanting to live in walkable communities. But my biggest issue is them gating it. Which I understand, they also want safety. But when you look at how adjacent the parcel is to the downtown gridded-street network, it seems like a waste of what could have been a well-designed SOUTH End district. But fortunately, the developer is going to extend the four-mile creek greenway from its current terminus that spits out onto Trade St, so that it wraps all around its property, along Fullwood and Trade, and connecting to Freemont. So that is nice for the suburbs further out there, at least. I am wondering if I'm just too young to appreciate diversifying your age demographics.
Anyway. Any thoughts? Opinions about Matthews? News updates?
The Height Thread....Time to discuss again....
Ron, WW and myself had a few chats recently on Nashville's lack of height with all of these new towers being constructed in the core, Gulch, and Mid-town. As of yet, Tony has not developed a 400 foot tower, and we still are not sure if 505 is a reality yet at 550 feet. Bridgestone is a mere' 460 feet, and the rest are 200-350 feet.
The ATT Tower at 617 feet (with spires) was constructed 21 years ago and since that time Nashville has not built a new tallest while our peer cities Austin and Charlotte are building new tallest towers on a regular basis, not to mention Oklahoma City with its 900 foot behemoth.
Although Austin and Charlotte have 800K+ respectively in their cities, and we have 650K , all three of us have MSA's and CSA'a relatively similar. So what is the reason we cannot surpass the 600 foot barrier, or the 700 foot barrier?
Austin has one tower in the 683 foot range and building one in the 688 range with multiple buildings in the 500-550 foot range. Charlotte has a couple of 800+ foot towers and a multitude of towers in the 500-700 foot range.
Now, I am an advocate of low rise, human scale, pedestrian friendly architecture. I am all for infill in the 10-15 story range in cool and funky areas like the Thompson Hotel and The Gulch Crossings Building, however, Nashville still needs a statement building. We need a beacon and a skyline identifying building.
Even Birmingham and Memphis have buildings the height of Nashville, (with the exception of ATT) and to many outsiders coming to visit our city, our skyline does not impress them one bit. As I walk the streets of downtown, I occasionally hear chatter about how non-impressive the city is in regards to the built environment. I even heard a woman criticize the Ascend Amphitheater calling it "too small and unimpressive." she went on to state her city had one much larger and much more impressive.
Yes, I know we are known for music, food, entertainment, and the like and those are great things, but it seems like Nashville continues to fall behind in high rise architecture. I know Nashville has amazing attributes many cities would love to have. I get all of that. I love my city, and have no inclinations to live elsewhere, but is it not time for an iconic tower?
Is it ever going to happen? It's like wondering of the Titans will ever win a Super Bowl or if Vanderbilt will ever win the $EC/National Championship in college football, or the Predators winning the Stanley Cup.
Are the odds of Nashville getting a 600+ foot building that remote, like the aforementioned sports teams winning championships?
Don't get me wrong, I love all the progress we are making, but I remember the proposals form the 80's which were big and were bold. Most proposals were 45+ stories, and 500-800 feet. We don't even get those proposals anymore. Tony's tower on Church Street keeps shrinking, so even he is not proposing a true skyscraper anymore. Now 505 is down to 550 foot mediocrity. You would think being the It City would draw some developers in town that want to do something tall.
Is our suburban pull still so strong that we will still see a mass exodus to the suburbs for more unsustainable office parks and shopping malls?
Center City Development Maps
Since I am loosing track of the apartment projects announced in the South corridor I put together a map showing the locations of announcements I could find and any assoicated information like the number of units. I also added the uptown, Seigle Point and midtown projects which I knew about. I included the Strawn project not because it looks eminent, but I felt like it was important.
The map is available here to edit: https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?mid=zVkgech8oPvQ.kAkwm8EIn_7Y
It is very likely that 1) I missed some projects and 2) I messed up some project boundaries (I did not check Polaris for parcel ownership). I am happy to make any corrections requested.