Written with Andy Zhu, Guest Contributor.
Plans have surfaced which detail the long-awaited redevelopment of 65 acres between West Trinity Lane and the Cumberland River. The Riverside is an upcoming mixed-use district Developed by Ewing Properties and projected at nearly $2.5 billion at completion. The approved plans indicate a mix of uses some of which include residential, medical, office, retail, and a max of 1,000 non-owner occupied short-term rentals (NOO STR). The approved SP zoning caps the permitted residential units at 2,500 units or about 38 units an acre. The site is located at 1252 West Trinity Lane.
The previous SP zoning approved in 2005, allowed for 248 attached townhouses, amenities, and a public road network. The Riverside passed Metro Council on August 1st and is now zoned SP and the T4CM character policy, allowing the new mixed-use district to proceed. The overall site is divided into 8 parcels, building heights up to 25-stories, divided into at least two phases, and anticipates nearly 15 years to complete. The plan has a set of conditions tied to the approval which addresses the phasing and future coordination of utility and road infrastructure. Here are a few highlights from the plan approval:
- The SP zoning approval is limited to 5,000,000 sq. ft. of development. Short-term, non-owner-occupied rentals are capped at 125 units per parcel.
- The developer must contribute to NDOT for further transportation and infrastructure studies, possibly covering road widening, intersection upgrades, sidewalk construction, and a potential new bridge. No specific monetary amount is noted in these conditions.
- The infrastructure needed for each development phase must be funded or built before starting the construction of that phase.
- Traffic calming measures are to be identified and installed by the developer.
- Historical markers relevant to the community should be identified and installed in collaboration with the Metropolitan Historical Commission.
Transportation Infrastructure Conditions
The development team completed a Regional Transportation Assessment that analyzed the potential transportation impacts of the proposed SP. Metro Planning worked with the development team and NDOT to identify appropriate development levels to be studied for each scenario. The results of the analyses found that significant developer & Metro funded capital infrastructure improvements will be needed if development occurs at levels similar to the proposed Riverside SP. These improvements include:
- Widening of existing roadways
- Transit improvements
- Enhanced(or expanded) Transit Center
- Sidewalk & bikeway construction
- Traffic signal enhancements,
- Construction of a new bridge over the Cumberland River.
The transit study shows that as development occurs along the Trinity Lane corridor, the proposed Riverside SP could increase the number of trips in the area by as much as 14%. The study also emphasized that if surrounding properties developed at a similar intensity, the number of new trips could more than double. CityNowNext recently reported on an adjacent property that connects to the new collector street at 820 Youngs Lane which could potentially pursue more intense zoning. A link to that story is below.
Based on the findings of this study, NDOT has submitted a funding request in the current Capital Improvement Budget (CIB) to address the likely need for future infrastructure improvements in the Haynes Trinity area. Metro will need to perform more studies and invest more capital funding in infrastructure enhancements to address current and future growth in the area as well.
The conditions also noted that the developer should be required to make a significant financial contribution towards these investments. However, no specific amounts were detailed, similar to the recent approval of Belle Meade Plaza which detailed upwards of $2 Million in developer contributions towards transportation studies and new traffic controls. Here’s the quick rundown:
1252 West Trinity Lane
|What’s Now:||Cleared Site|
|What’s Next:||Mixed-use District|
|Residences:||2,500 Units Max|
|Heights:||25 Stories max|
|Building Area||5 Million SF|
Phase 1 permits 4-story buildings along West Trinity Lane and then after a 50’ step back the buildings can rise to 7-stories. Buildings that are interior to the site and fronting the planned Main Street, can rise to 15 stories. In Phase 2, the maximum building height along West Trinity Lane is 5-stories and then after a 50’ step back they rise to 12-stories. Buildings that are interior to the site and fronting Main Street can achieve up to 25 stories.
The plan identifies 6 new streets within its network which are accessed from multiple open points of entry from West Trinity Lane. Main Street will serve as a new collector street that runs parallel to West Trinity Lane and connects to Youngs Lane. Streets A, B, and C will prioritize service areas and access to underground parking structures. The final site plan will provide details for each of the streets. However, the street design parameters explain there will be an emphasis on prioritizing pedestrian movement.
The site also includes a comprehensive Greenways trail framework, as well as biking and multimodal infrastructure throughout the development. Metro Parks emphasized that the greenway should provide a “park-like” experience serving as recreational space and maximizing health benefits and the conservation of natural resources. It should also be linear, connecting the three park areas across the site.
The land use is divided into 3 character zones which consists of the following:
- Zone 1: (Shown in blue) Town Center: This zone prioritizes mixed-use buildings with a focus on connectivity and public use.
- Zone 2: ( Shown in yellow) Ravine Housing: Predominantly residential, it ensures views and access to the adjacent park.
- Zone 3: (Shown in red) River Terraces: A commercial hub with buildings kept lower to maintain downtown views.
The development is currently divided into two phases with designated building heights in each phase. Phase 1 permits 4-story buildings along West Trinity Lane, after a 50’ step back the buildings can rise to 7-stories. Buildings that are interior to the site and fronting the planned Main Street, can rise to 15 stories. In Phase 2, the maximum building height along West Trinity Lane is 5-stories, after a 50’ step back they rise to 12-stories. Buildings that are interior to the site and fronting the planned Main Street can achieve up to 25-stories.
Development phasing will be based on the designated subareas shown above. However, the plan notes that the order in which the sub-areas develop is subject to change based on future market conditions. The plan also outlines the following regarding the phasing:
- The total development area allowed for Phase 1 includes up to 1.6 million GSF and 1,100 dwelling units. Phase 1 development may extend over more than one subarea but will be limited to the total GFA and dwelling units outlined.
- The on-site infrastructure required to support each subarea will be implemented alongside the executed subarea. This includes the phasing of streets required to create a continuous path of travel and supporting utility infrastructure.
- Main Street will be a phased implementation, but it will always have a continuous path of travel back to West Trinity through the other local road network within the project. The western connection of Main Street to Youngs Lane will be completed after 3.5 million SF of development with a use and occupancy permit.
- Street D will be dedicated right-of-way, but if Metro has not acquired control of the property for the continuation of the road to the west of the project within five years of final zoning approval, Street D will be abandoned.
- The off-site infrastructure required for Phase 1 will be completed prior to completion of the phase or sooner.
- Unused development areas may be transferred to future subareas.
The plan has received approval to advance with the Final SP and site plans, however, no specific date for submission was noted.
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