Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Green Hills neighborhood association declares victory over developer; developer counters with new design

Southern change gonna come at last
A developer pulled plans for a skyscraper in suburban Green Hills after the Green Hills NA filed a lawsuit against the company. GHNA declared victory in an email sent out the day before yesterday:

We want to update our neighborhood supporters with some positive developments related to our lawsuit over the proposed Southern Land skyscraper project.

As you will recall, we filed a petition back in November to have a judge review the legality of the approval granted by Metro Planning. On Friday (January 3), through our legal counsel, we accepted a motion by Metro attorneys to dismiss the lawsuit on the grounds that Southern Land has withdrawn their proposal. This motion came about because Southern Land formally withdrew their proposal for a 22 story tower. Metro Planning has thus nullified its original approval of the site plan.

While this is a victory for the Green Hills community, we fully expect Southern Land to return with a different proposal. We plan to vigorously oppose any aspect of a new development which we feel violates the Green Hills UDO or other portions of the zoning code. Furthermore, we feel we’ve sent a strong message to Metro Planning that Green Hills citizens are closely monitoring how such projects are approved.

This is just the first step in what we knew from the start would be a long marathon. We feel confident that our arguments are valid, but know we will have to present our concerns again before the Planning Commission or in court.

We continue to appreciate your support. Donations to our legal fund are critical to arm us for the battles ahead.

With sincere thanks,

The GHNA Board

Not missing a beat, Southern Land countered with announcement of a shorter concept. Now it has 16 stories:

The plan for a 16-story Green Hills tower that Southern Land Co. plans to submit in the next six weeks will include the same office and retail components as the last proposal, a vice president for the Franklin-based company said.

"Overall the general mixed-use plan has remained about the same and we're just kind of tweaking how it all comes together," said Michael McNally, vice president of multifamily development ....

McNally said the project would lose around 20 apartment units, landing at about 285 units. But it would still include about 60,000 square feet of office space on three floors over about 15,000 square feet of ground-floor retail, he said. The project includes two restaurants, and will still have about 600 parking spaces.

McNally said construction could begin by spring or summer and be finished in 2016.

Will the new plan be worthy of neighborhood association support?


  1. 600 parking spots.
    2 spots per unit is 570. That leaves on 30 spots for shoppers and hundreds of office workers on 3 floors. Not nearly enough. Where will the excess park?
    Double or triple the parking spots and help pay for traffic relief and maybe, just maybe it will fly.

  2. This is a problem with the current zoning, I'm afraid. Look at the weasel words "which we feel" in the quotes above.

    Anyway, better late than never, GHNA. That area should concern people outside Green Hills, as it contains the mall and a high school. Oh, and traffic sucks. Perhaps they should get an Amp.

  3. They would still be protesting if it were eight stories, nothing will be good enough.