smeagolsfree

Nashville Urban Parks and Greenways and Bikeways

23 posts in this topic

I thought it would be good to start a thread concerning the Green-ways, bike-ways, bike lanes and the urban parks within the boundaries of Nashville.

There was one article that caught my eye in the Tennessean today concerning a 322 acre old growth forest addition to Warner Park. Warner Park is a highly visited park and Metro needs to take steps to keep this new area as natural as possible. What are your thoughts on this new area? Should they open it up to hiking trails only or no trails at all and make it a conservation wildlife habitat area? I would be opposed to vehicular traffic, jogging trails, or bike trails.

http://www.tennessean.com/apps/pbcs.dll/ar...S0202/803160396

I am a firm believer that Nashville needs more green-ways, biking and hiking trails that can connect to the urban areas with the fringe areas. A good example of this is the new pedestrian bridge over the Cumberland that should open very soon. You would be able to hike/bike from Percy Priest Dam all the way through Metro center and go right through the center of DT area.

I know there are a lot of folks that do not want to see green-ways in their backyard and I can understand some of the concern there, however there is a need for more trails like this. I know there have been two recent additions to the Metro Parks system, one being Bells Bend Park and the other Beaman Park. Both of these parks are very under utilized. I have been to both on several occasions and have found myself to be the only visitor in the park. I dont think a lot of people even know these parks exist or many may not even care which is unfortunate. There has been talk about connecting both of these parks by trail. Only problem with a bike connector is that bikes are not allowed in either park at this time.

Just wanted to get some thoughts and ideas on how we can make things better in Nashville proper with regards to the park system.

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I thought it would be good to start a thread concerning the Green-ways, bike-ways, bike lanes and the urban parks within the boundaries of Nashville.

There was one article that caught my eye in the Tennessean today concerning a 322 acre old growth forest addition to Warner Park. Warner Park is a highly visited park and Metro needs to take steps to keep this new area as natural as possible. What are your thoughts on this new area? Should they open it up to hiking trails only or no trails at all and make it a conservation wildlife habitat area? I would be opposed to vehicular traffic, jogging trails, or bike trails.

http://www.tennessean.com/apps/pbcs.dll/ar...S0202/803160396

I am a firm believer that Nashville needs more green-ways, biking and hiking trails that can connect to the urban areas with the fringe areas. A good example of this is the new pedestrian bridge over the Cumberland that should open very soon. You would be able to hike/bike from Percy Priest Dam all the way through Metro center and go right through the center of DT area.

I know there are a lot of folks that do not want to see green-ways in their backyard and I can understand some of the concern there, however there is a need for more trails like this. I know there have been two recent additions to the Metro Parks system, one being Bells Bend Park and the other Beaman Park. Both of these parks are very under utilized. I have been to both on several occasions and have found myself to be the only visitor in the park. I dont think a lot of people even know these parks exist or many may not even care which is unfortunate. There has been talk about connecting both of these parks by trail. Only problem with a bike connector is that bikes are not allowed in either park at this time.

Just wanted to get some thoughts and ideas on how we can make things better in Nashville proper with regards to the park system.

smeagolsfree, I have tried to place you inside of AC, you once said you were located north and near of downtown. I am very familiar with AC, something that I have put many years into and might share some similar topics. grapa

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I live just inside AC on the right in the Caldwell Estates area. I use Metro parks a lot including the new Beaman Park that is not far at all from where I live especially going the back roads. I think it is 8 miles.

As far as the entire Metro area goes, I think it would be great if they could connect the River Green-ways and the Bike-ways from county to county. It needs to be a regional effort.

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Tennessean Article About Potential Cuts to Shelby Park Golf Course, others

Attached is a link to an article in the Tennessean that brings to light some discussions at Metro about closing or making cuts to Shelby Park Golf Course and possibly also Warner Park. Needless to say, this is news to me, but some on this board may be more in the loop on those matters. The article goes on to say that Shelby Park Golf Course will not close, but that possibly Wave Country and the Sportsplex will, according to Diane Neighbors.

We will see what happens in the budge crunch. I know that the nature center at Shelby Park got delayed but was eventually opened in the last round of budget discussions and I think that the same thing happened at the Fort Negley one.

I have not used either facility, but perhaps the Sportsplex and Wave Country could be privatized?

Edited by bwithers1

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I think the nature centers at Beaman and Bells Bend Parks are a little premature, because of the lack of traffic these areas get. I would much rather have seen more trails and other improvements to the parks than the Nature centers, but it may increase the traffic to these parks. Many times the money that is allocated to any government agency is not spent very well. They may get these nature centers open and then not be able to man them.

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I think the nature centers at Beaman and Bells Bend Parks are a little premature, because of the lack of traffic these areas get. I would much rather have seen more trails and other improvements to the parks than the Nature centers, but it may increase the traffic to these parks. Many times the money that is allocated to any government agency is not spent very well. They may get these nature centers open and then not be able to man them.

I am inclined to agree with you that if there is not enough money both to build the structures AND staff them, that trails will be preferable. Perhaps Tony G and the Mays Family could be presuaded to cover the building construction cost as part of their impact fees and then the Metro money could be saved for staffing? (I don't really want to step into that argument, though.)

But I do wonder how an unstaffed building would work. Maybe the buildings will have self-guided tour signage? Or maybe there will be classes that are offered at each facility on sort of a rotating schedule so that one staff person can cover more ground?

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Does anybody know what they're doing with the old White Bridge Road bridge? It's been closed to auto traffic for a while now but you could cross over on foot or bike from the Richland Creek Greenway. Now they're redoing the bridge and I didn't know if it was going to still be for foot/bicycle traffic or a back way in to the new Publix shopping center.

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Does anybody know what they're doing with the old White Bridge Road bridge? It's been closed to auto traffic for a while now but you could cross over on foot or bike from the Richland Creek Greenway. Now they're redoing the bridge and I didn't know if it was going to still be for foot/bicycle traffic or a back way in to the new Publix shopping center.

I noticed that too, but do not know what they are doing. I need to walk that green way and see what they have done.

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Although I had been on the new Greenway Bridge a couple of weeks ago, I decided to go back, given that the news was touting it as having its official opening today.

This time, I was on foot, rather than the Roller Blades of my last trip. But it was a great day for a walk, so...

Here's a couple of med-resolution teaser pictures, with many more available at my Picasa album, Bridge Pix. (Are there guidelines for how to handle higher resolution postings? What is recommended/discouraged? I do like how the site auto-scales images.)

greenway.jpg

and

greenway2.jpg

Enjoy!

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Those who travel Highway 12 into and out of town have recently seen new signs for Bells Bend Park go up near the intersection of OHB and Hwy 12. They are small so look twice. It is confusing though that Bike Route signs have appearred and disappeared over the last twelve months or so. On OHB signs were placed on both sides of the road frequently leading to the entrance to the park. Within the first month some have come down and not replaced.

The new nature center in Bells Bend Park looks very nice and stands behind a locked gate to I would assume to finish inside work. It will be interesting with the warm weather approaching what the use of the facility will be and with the budget crunch if it will have regular hours and be staffed fully. I will watch for the flow of traffic that this new addition to our park system will draw and the financial benefit our 'cultural' center at the intersection of Hwy 12 and OHB.

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Thanks for the pictures HGG! What a great addition for Nashville. We have had some gorgeous days to get out and enjoy it.

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I want to raise awareness and commend the City of Nashville for their work on the sidewalks of Old Hickory from I-65 to at least Nolensville road. Nearly all sidewalk/crosswalks have been ripped out and replaced with asthetically pleasing and bike-friendly ramps. Now I would not pick bright yellow as the color of choice for the metal plates contained in these ramps but this is such an improvement that I will withhold my criticism. Maybe Nashville is really taking notice of the infrastructure challenges of this town and the astonishingly bad condition of the sadly few sidewalks we have. The work on OHB honestly is something I am proud of every time I drive by and was sorely needed.

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The fall is around the corner and traffic at Bells Bend Park is still idle. The buildings are complete and parking painted but unused. Local use of this park will be very minimal. Success is dependent on traffic into the Bend.

If you want this park to be the big draw that it was advertised to be in the argument to save the land, construction of May Town Center would assure its' success. Opposition to MTC would not accept this point but to have the Scottsboro/Bells Bend Design Draft Plan come to fruition the money, people, and attention MTC brings to the area would assure its' success.

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Mayor Dean just appointed a new person for walking and biking.

From the city paper

Mayor appoints new position to advocate for walking, biking

By: Nate Rau, [email protected]

Toks Omishakin will serve as Dean’s new bicycle and pedestrian coordinator. Omishakin moves over from the Planning Department, where he worked in a similar role.

Omishakin’s primary responsibilities will be to ensure that the sidewalks and bikeways master plan is properly implemented and to serve as a liaison between Dean and the newly appointed Bicycle/Pedestrian Advisory Committee.

Appointing the new position is the latest in a series of moves by Dean relating to walking and biking in Nashville. Shortly after taking office, he called for an update to Metro’s sidewalks and bikeways plan. The update included creating a new matrix to determine where new sidewalks and bikeways would be located.

"My goal is to transform Nashville into one of the most walkable and bikeable cities in the country, and to do that will take consistent effort and coordination from my office,” Dean said. “Toks brings to my office the right experience and expertise in this area. I look forward to what I know he will be able to help us accomplish.”
Edited by timmay143

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The greenway around Richland Creek is getting an extension per the Tennessean.

Richland Creek Greenway extension set to begin

Route is popular with West neighbors

BY NATALIA MIELCZAREK • THE TENNESSEAN • JANUARY 4, 2010

After at least a yearlong delay, construction on a mile-long extension to the Richland Creek Greenway in West Nashville is set to begin within weeks, Metro greenway officials said.

The route will connect two miles of existing paved trails to communities off White Bridge Road, Knob Road and to the Nashville State Community College. The project is expected to wrap up this summer, officials said.

Richland Creek Greenway extension set to begin

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Friends of Warner Parks have raised enough money to purchase additional land for the parks.

From the Tennessean:

Warner Parks Friends celebrate milestone

BY LEA ANN OVERSTREET ALLEN • THE TENNESSEAN • JANUARY 11, 2010

Friends of Warner Parks never gave up hope on reaching its goal of purchasing the 324-acre Hill property, and now the group’s dream has become reality.

Friends met a Dec. 31 deadline to match a $300,000 grant offered in October by the James Stephen Turner Family Foundation.

Now worth $600,000, the grant will close out the campaign to purchase the property, with the ultimate goal of deeding the land to Metro Parks.

“We are tremendously gratified by the fantastic response from the community,” said campaign chairman Warner Bass.

“This property will be a great addition to the Warner Parks, and we look forward to the time when a master plan can be completed and the public can begin to use the property.”

Warner Parks Friends celebrate milestone

Edited by timmay143

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article from the City Paper about the new Riverfront Adventure Park. It appears it is contingent on the sports authority being able to relocate 277 parking spaces for LP Field.

I'm happy the park is still in the works, but is anyone else sick of the control that Bud Adams holds on the East Bank? I'm a Titans fan and i'm glad we have them, but this space is useless 347 days of the year. I also don't like the idea of the city gifting total control of an entire neighborhood to a for profit organization. Besides, do we really need to have so much parking for the stadium? I understand that people pay a premium for these spots(and it's their right to do so), but there are so many options and i can think of 100 better uses for this property.

But i digress, what i originally understood to be the plan for this area was a multiuse type of land. I remember reading they planned upon using a rubber mat type of foundation, which would allow grass to grow, yet could support vehicle traffic. Therefore, we would have a year-round park, which could also serve as parking for those ever so important 8 days of the year. Does anyone else recall this plan?

Oh, and where will those 277 parking spots go? Eminent domain?

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Here is a News Channel 5 link with all the park links available in the story. I will post them too. Ugh I am so pumped for the River Front Plan. If they pull this whole thing off it will be the best thing Nashville has. Ok one of the best things. It is so pimp (sorry, only word I can think of to describe it!silly.png).

Downtown Riverfront Development One Step Closer

http://www.nashville...rks/riverfront/

I think the East Bank will be totally transformed even from the start. I am not so sure if it is Bud Adams and the Titans that have "control" over the area as it is what is over there now. It used to be mainly industrial, and there have been little improvements once the stadium was built. It is slowly getting there (Shelby, Gateway, art, etc.) and the plan is going to make it a true destination place. If you look at the built out plan, I think the designers have hit the nail on the head. Plenty of activities to make the area a 365 place. Docks, water walk ways, park space, greenways, trails, wildlife, urban forest, and a river walk with retail, residential, and office space!!

edit: forgot to mention the pavilion and area for entertainment (3500 seats plus 25000 lawn seats) a replacement for Starwood?

Edited by timmay143

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I emailed the Centennial Park about some improvement ideas. I used some of you guys' comments from the crane sightings thread. Anyone have any additional ideas? I can email them or you can email them at: [email protected]

Here are a few excerpts from the Nashville forum on urbanplanet.org

"I've gotta say, i really like the Artesia by the dog park. I take my dog there often and almost every time, i find myself admiring that building. The dark brick with the tarnished bronze roof looks very upscale to me. I think we will see more growth in the area around the park.

Personally, am am baffled that there are not already several mid-rise buildings immediately next to the park. If i had money, that is where i would want to live. Then again, the mid-rise on the corner of 31st doesn't appear to have sold too well, so maybe i am wrong (but it seems low-end to me). I think the retirement home might hamper things a bit. If i were a developer, i would build an extremely high end mid/high-rise at the Rite-aide site (or the McDonald's site, or the lot across from Rite-aide where the jiffy lube is)."

"Both Centennial Park and Bicentennial Park should be lined with mixed-use buildings with ground floor retail; restaurants and cafés and civic buildings like museums and performing arts centers. The little side streets between Centennial and 31st already have a lot of residential; single family, duplexes and apartments as well as various offices and services but there is an opportunity for much greater density. I don't see the retirement building as a problem. "

I understand these are out of the park's realm, but just some suggestions to promote wise development around the park.

Could the park be connected to the greenway system?

What about walking and biking around the park?

What about adding fishing and disc golf around the park?

Is there a playground for kids?

^These may already be addressed, but just a few ideas I saw visiting Victor Ashe Park in Knoxville where I now live (grew up and lived in Nashville for ~ 23 yrs. and always will consider it home; plus my parents, in-laws, and lots of friends still live there).

Is there anyway to add dedicated sports fields (soccer, baseball, dunno might be too small)?

What if there was a lazy river you could float around the park on for canoes or inner tubes?

I would like to see improved mass transportation for visitors and residents to get to park (like the free circuit DT).

More wildlife information such as on local species, maybe could add a small wildlife area?

Would like to see some cool art such as something as monumental as Chicago's bean.

Tribute to historic figures in the area including Natives and such. More prominence of Greek relations. I like the obelisk, is that still there? Add more ancient and multicultural stuff like the obelisk.

Holding fairs there such as Italian Street Fair and others.

What about the old sky lift? Could we bring it or something like it back? Like one to a big viewing tower.

Thanks,

Tim Barber

Here is what is listed on there site that resulted from the first public meeting:Nashville.gov Centennial Park

Saturday night Big Band Dances must stay: “Best thing to happen to Nashville since Saturday night Opry”.<li>Can we revive paddleboats on the lake for families?<li>Is it possible to put a Merry-go-round back in the Park?<li>Trees on east side of Park are low; need trimming.<li>East-side trees are an obstruction; sight lines that lead into the park towards the Parthenon would be nice.<li>Need theater on the lake where you can hear.<li>Afraid of changing the park too much because it is very loved and used now.<li>Please find the “hippie tree” and preserve it as well as trees with other history or significance. The base of trees that look dead are adored.<li>We miss the streetcar.<li>The “Contemporary” design style is out of place in this park.

<li>A theater is not ideal; too loud. However, live performances are great, especially multiple and different all at once.

<li>More flowers; “Picturesque” style.<li>More restrooms are needed.

<li>Please retain good performance spaces.

<li>Brown Bag Lunch Concert Series: would like to continue (do not need any additional equipment, provisions, just would like to be able to continue the event).<li>Would like to see a free outside swimming pool – just for play - like there was in the past.<li>This is a neighborhood park as well.

<li>Replace picnic tables, chairs and grills from the normal wear & tear they've received.<li>Consider restoring an educational component of the park (similar to contributions of J.C. Napier & Scales in the past).<li>A favorite childhood memory is the Nativity Scene that used to be hosted annually.<li>An enhanced setting for weddings.<li>From a former Opry singer: live concerts in 1963 held 10,000 people.

<li>Art shows at the Parthenon have been held for decades.

<li>Audience member is planning to host a film about the Parthenon.

<li>Millennium Park [Chicago, IL] is a great frame of reference for this park.

<li>Spray park at Millennium Park provides a water without the safety features needed for a pool; a good alternative to an outdoor pool.

<li>What would you do for parking? For success, how will it be accommodated?

<li>Continued public input is needed.

<li>What’s going to happen in the next year?

<li>Concerned about outside firm designing our park.

<li>Outdoor jazz café provides wide variety of food items.

<li>Café gets complaints about lack of bathrooms.

<li>Please make improvements to exteriors of the buildings in the park.

<li>I love the art classes at Arts Center; I'd like to see that expanded and maintained. Pottery classes are crowded. Equipment needs upgrading.

<li>Varied physical activity currently at the park.

<li>Dog Park is an asset.

<li>Music at the park; bandshell is used all the time. An additional stage could be used all the time.

<li>A musicans’ corner could be added.

<li>Neighbors Reaching Out (local neighborhood association advocating for the youth activities in this park): community surrounding the park has no recreational areas such as a football and baseball field within walking distance of the local residential neighborhoods.

<li>From the perspective of young families living in the city, in the neighborhood: Park has long had a “front door” [along West End] and a “back door” [north edge]. What about the sides? What about pedestrian entries? How could the improved edges in the park improve the quality and value of the surrounding neighborhood? Could they be arranged so there are more eyes on the park?

<li>We enjoy the gardens

<li>We enjoy the art classes

<li>Youth center – similar to the Arts Center could be enjoyable.

<li>Outdoor public swimming pools are not really existent in the city [such as in speaker’s native city of Austin, TX]. The Arts Center used to be where the pool was. I love the Arts Center also, so please don’t move it to replace the previous pool.

<li>Would like a place for my grandkids to play.

<li>Wall of glass onto Hope Garden is nice. Relationship between indoor and outdoor spaces is important.

<li>Signage could be improved

<li>In another park, the Princess Dianna memorial is incorporated into the space, but does not overwhelm the space. It is very enjoyable. Glass wall is a nice design feature.

<li>Would like to see the lake cleaned up.

<li>Miss the fountains.

<li>Millennium Park is too big for Centennial Park. [Recreating a MP in Nashville would be a mistake].

<li>We’re afraid that an outside design firm’s “grand scheme ideas” will destroy what we love about CP.

<li>Centennial Park is a little park. [Land area is not as large as other Parks being used as examples for CP’s future].

<li>Spray parks are a joke.

<li>It gets warm out in Nashville.

<li>We want an outdoor pool.

<li>Rose Park is not lost yet. A plan has incorporated it in the neighborhood including cooking classes, pottery, bilingual studies, etc. for seniors and residents to utilize the park. It’s not just to look at, but also to use in an interactive way. Rock Park in DC is a good example to look at for Centennial Park.

<li>Special memory from when the lake froze and she and mother went ice skating on the lake.

<li>Adult ballet class 3x/week is very important to me.

<li>Art Center flooring needs to consider needs of dancers/dance instruction.

<li>Performance spaces in Park need to also consider needs of dancers.

<li>Centennial Arts gallery is well lit, a great facility. The garden at the arts center is great.

<li>If Nashville is supposed to be the Athens of the South – that means Nashville is a place where ideas converge, therefore we’re excited to see what the design team will design for this park.

<li>We’re in Music City. We’d like to see an emphasis on [quality of] “sound” in the park and how the landscape can improve that.

<li>We are also a city of healthcare. How can an emphasis on healthy activity be incorporated into the landscape?

<li>Connection to Jefferson Street Bridge. How can that be addressed in this Master Plan?

<li>Pro GGN ideas if there was a local component to the design; local businesses involved. Support education on food and health.

<li>Concerned that Centennial Park will change too much. How much different will it look to an average person?

<li>Will it still look like our park?

<li>Parthenon hours need to be expanded. Many people are disappointed by the museum being closed.

<li>Please preserve the ability to feed the ducks. But ducks have to be fed something more than the bread and cheerios they are fed today.

<li>Please keep the pedal swings.

<li>Has the design team been spending time in the park? [Yes, this week’s site visit is the team’s 3rd visit to the park since proposal interviews were held in November 2009].

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Timmay, thanks for giving them input. We need to have a voice in this matter.

The following is just a repost of mine from NC, but it applies...

I would like to see a cafe or two. Yes, i realize there is already a cafe in one of the older buildings, but it is rarely open, seating is limited, and the building is just plain tacky.

MORE TREES!

I would like to see the garden expanded.

An updated amphitheater would be nice. I love the clam-shell style theatres we have had in the past. I would like it to be geared towards symphony and theater.

I would like to see the removal of the two parking areas that cross the great lawn. In fact, if they decide to completely remove all auto access, i would not complain.

More benches, swings, and picnic tables. MORE TREES!

Some water feature would be nice for the kids on a hot day, such as dancing fountains like we have at the Mall and Public Sq.

Permanent chess tables (concrete), maybe even a life sized chess set would be cool. Please make sure these are shaded. Pieces could be loaned (with id) from one of the vendors.

Finally, Pedestrian crosswalks across bordering streets (besides West End, it seems to be in good shape) need to be highly visible, possibly with speed bumps and flashing yellow lights.

...to follow up on that post, i retract my statement about West End having good crosswalks. It's pretty tough to cross the W.E., Elliston, 25th intersection. Currently, traffic coming from Elliston/25th turning right onto W.E. can continue through a red light when clear. This needs to be stopped, with a pedestrian crosswalk in it's place.

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