Tuesday, March 31, 2009

More Like a Second MetroCenter on Bells Bend

Scottsboro resident, Kathleen Wolff, who would be one of those most directly affected by the construction and congestion of May Town Center speaks out against a second downtown:
Inappropriate development will keep popping up if we don't do something. This community has spoken with a remarkably unified voice, but we have a modest per capita income and are struggling against immense outside wealth. Those deep pockets keep funding telephone push polls, glossy proposals and public-relations firms that try to rally support for MTC.

Should they be able to dictate a future of construction, traffic jams, noise and urban sprawl? Or should there be some mechanism by which this neighborhood's voice can be heard once and for all?

That is what Sen. Henry's proposal would do, with its "one-in-10, grandfathered in" and new provisions that allow current property owners to build on current lots regardless of size, or pass the land on to their children who can build on it or sell. Thereafter, development would be limited to one house per at least 10 acres.

The Beaman Park-Bells Bend corridor is a Nashville treasure, a spectacular community asset for all of us. The majority wants to keep it that way.


  1. Here we are in the middle of the Great Recession. A local family is ready to pump millions of dollars into our economy, to create an expanded tax base and thousands of jobs without asking for any public money,

    Their plan will include the largest private land conservation IN THE CITY'S HISTORY, forever setting aside nearly 1000 acres for conversation.

    And, more than that, they are putting almost 1000 acres surrounding their 485 acre development,

    It is an economic stimulus package paid for with PRIVATE, not tax payer, dollars.

  2. Calling a Nashville development "the largest private land conservation" is not saying much given the development community's poor history of conservation.

    Concepts are always, recession or not, sold as benefits that "pump millions of dollars" in, without regard to the costs or strings attached. In reality, some deliver, some don't.

    It is a lie to say that no public dollars will be spent on this. Public dollars will be spent on the infrastructure placements and upgrades beyond the bridge, and then maintenance of both the bridge and infrastructure grid will be paid for with tax dollars.

    The May Family's gesture to protect through conservation is nothing but gesture. Much of the acreage going to conservation is floodplain that would not be building viable. There are no guarantees that setting aside for zoning will guarantee conservation in perpetuity. Conserved properties can easily be nibbled to death by exceptions, spot zoning, and SPs.

    Once development gets going at May Town Center, there will only be increasingly more pressure to build and sprawl more across the Bend without any restrictions whatsoever. You can claim conservation all you want. Repeating it over and over again does not make it real. What will keep it real is protecting the current topography of the Bend by denying a bridge. Difficult access is the best environmental protector Bells Bend has.

  3. those who don't know 'blog' on the side of conservativism. May Town Center is viable and a healthy alternative to nothing or the same. Don't mention topography as your argument if you don't 'actuall' know what the topo is first hand. Sprawl is out of the question in the Bend. Next door neighbors to MTC is a sewage treatment plant and a 800 acre park. OHB is a dead end! Nowhere to go. There are 6,000 acres of very steep terrain in Bells Bend. Big box stores will not find themselves in BB. There is also the Scottsboro/Bells Bend Detailed Design Plan in place. Know your TOPO!

  4. I've been out to Bells Bend on several occasions, so I am not totally ignorant of it. Topographically its hills are not any higher than in Bellevue down I-40 way, and there is plenty of sprawl in Bellevue crammed up against and into hills. Hills that hem in Los Angeles have not stopped LA from sprawling. There is nothing about Bells Bend that limits out-of-control development except the absence of a bridge and a developed road system for egress.

    If mountaintops can be removed, hills present no challenge at all to flatten or mold to suit development. Parks can be reduced. Sewage plants can be moved. The only thing protecting the Bend environment right now is the topography absent easy automobile access.

  5. Since August 2008 the Scottsboro/Bells Bend detailed Design Plan has been in effect to do much of what you question is not present. Much of which are the ideas of residents.
    You don't address the alternative of 600 individual homes, 1200 automobils taveling down Old Hickory Blvd. with most converging on the only road in and the only road out of Bells Bend onto Highway 12 at busy rush hour times.
    Old Hickory Blvd. is approximately 1/2 the width of what guidlines require. Tractor trailors, delivery trucks, and trucks with boat trailors speed along OHB, already.
    Your last paragraph baffles me. You have said that 'all topography can be changed', your example of Bellevue is used. But, you then state that the only thing that protects BB IS the topo.
    I would challenge that this sewage treatment plant and this park would be 'TOUCHED', or moved as you would suggest.
    There is room for more residential construction and it is already expected and planned for.
    Also, the current tax revenue for the 1,500 acres is $28,763.00. The Projected annual tax revenue with current zoning would be over $800,000. In 10 years it would project to about $300,000.00 to $8,000,000.00.