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Preservationist. A hypothetical.


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Most of us would be up in arms if we heard of a plan to demolish lower broadway, or to make the village into a parking lot. But most of us rarely give any significant thought to how much we value new (or new'ish) construction.

So, if I heard correctly, the commercial strip of buildings along Demonbreun near the roundabout has been purchased. If I'm not mistaken, these are the buildings which contain tin roof, red rooster and the like.

I think we can all agree that these buildings are in no way historic. But I think we can also agree that they fit into the basic values of good urban design. Sure, they are only 1 floor buildings, but they front the street, they are all great commercial spaces and they are densely packed together. I'm sure you would be hard pressed to find anyone complain about their usefulness as urban fabric.

So, the question I propose is this; If a developer planned to demolish this strip of buildings and replace it with a big mid-rise with little or no commercial space, would you be up in arms against it? If not, why? What would need to be different about this block of buildings to be "worth saving"?

I for one hope these buildings aren't torn down for a long time. It's rare in Nashville to find a block as walkable as that one. It seems that most mid rise buildings, even when they attempt to include commercial space, do a poor job of creating a truly urban "neighborhood".

Just my $.02, but I'm curious what the rest of you think.

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I completely agree with you.  That block does fit well into to landscape, and with the tower going up across the street, would you really notice driving by that it is all one floor?  I drove down Broadway and west end yesterday on my way out of town and actually observed that the strip on the corner of 21st and west end felt much more urban than the one at 23rd and west end.   I actually considered to myself that the only difference between them is that one has parking in front and one has parking in the back.  Cosmetically, the one on 21st does look much better, the materials used on the front are much nicer.  but they are both single level strips of businesses. 


The bars on Demonbreun are the same, they feel urban because they dont look like a cheap suburban strip mall and they front the street.  losing them would be a major loss to the area. even though I haven't really been there since I was right out of college.

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