Downtown Nashville continues to evolve into a place that serves a broader, more diverse spectrum of residents, visitors, and employees. A group of residents and property owners are looking to distinguish itself from its downtown neighbors – the Lower Broadway honky-tonk district and SoBro convention business area. Coined, “South Bank”, the Downtown sub district aims to be a quieter, more accessible, and inclusive neighborhood distinguished by old and new residences, offices, and dining.
The neighborhood, which stretches from the Cumberland River at Demonbreun and rises along the riverfront up Rolling Mill Hill and Rutledge Hill and over to Third Avenue South, is experiencing transformative change with its blend of offices, residences, retail, restaurants, boutique hotels, and historic landmarks in a walkable environment amid acres of open green space.
Plans are for an array of brand touchpoints that include pole banners, kiosk maps and an area website that will feature property, business, dining and attraction destinations that open in the future. The South Bank district combines a lot of established downtown locations, such as Rolling Mill Hill, Rutledge Hill, and Trolley Barns, with many developments that are newly complete (like Four Seasons Hotel and Residences Nashville), under construction and planned structures over a roughly 125-acre area that creates essentially a new neighborhood.
“As the city has a renewed emphasis on activating life on the Cumberland River, it seemed natural that the river should be a source of consideration as we tried to determine a designation for a community expanding and taking shape around us. This entire district rises from the South Bank of the Cumberland and the waterfront will certainly be a primary feature as the neighborhood matures in the coming years,”
— Ray Hensler, Developer of Peabody Union
“The Nashville Downtown Partnership is looking forward to collaborating with South Bank partners to showcase the emerging neighborhood. From the historic structures and elevated riverfront scenery to the greenway system and new community amenities, we see great opportunity for downtown Nashville. With Metro Planning and city leaders prioritizing green space and connectivity, South Bank will be sought after by locals and visitors alike. Over the past decades, our downtown continues to blossom with neighborhoods that have distinctive character and provide great places to live, work, play and invest.”
— Tom Turner, Nashville Downtown Partnership President
Within the South Bank footprint, Metro Government is planning Wharf Park on about 25 acres of undeveloped property on the Cumberland River, just south of the Trolley Barns, Peabody Plaza, and Stiles|Hensler’s Peabody Union project, located south of Korean Veterans Boulevard. The park and surrounding dining, retail, and entertainment hub will be an attractive lifestyle amenity for existing neighborhood residents and a magnet that draws future investment, businesses, and residents to locate to the area.
There are also three major projects underway which are in various stages and includes multiple towers, park-like green spaces, new retail opportunities, and pedestrian centric designs. The map below shows the three projects greater context.
“I’ve been blessed to represent downtown during a truly transformative period of time for our city, and I am particularly excited about the direction of the South Bank neighborhood. I love that my collaboration with the Planning Department has resulted in not just the approval of a number of exciting projects, but also in downtown with multiple distinctive identities. I think a series of upcoming developments will create a beautiful neighborhood with a lot of public open park spaces and features that will really make our city look good and hopefully serve as a model for how we develop more of our urban core.”
— Freddie O’Connell District 19 Councilman & Mayoral Candidate
Neighbors within the community talked for many months about how an entirely new neighborhood was unfolding south of Lower Broadway and engaged city stakeholders in how to determine a named identity that befit the location and created a publicly recognized destination. Neighbors plan to work with city leaders and area property owners and businesses to brand the area as South Bank. Similar efforts were done in the past which have brought about The Gulch, River North, SoBro and others subdistricts throughout the urban core.
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