Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise To Lead Design Discussions For St. Elmo Town Center Project

Friday, January 17, 2014

Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise (CNE) is moving forward with the St. Elmo town center planning project by facilitating a three-part design and planning charrette. During the charrettes, attendees will be educated on the background of the project and be introduced to the design team all while being provided a platform for an open dialogue on the development of St. Elmo and South Chattanooga over the next several years.

With CNE acting as the coordinating entity for this project, they have enlisted Michael Watkins, a nationally acclaimed town planner and architect, to lead the design team. Mr. Watkins has led the design of more than 70 neighborhoods across the country, and will bring his expertise to help St. Elmo bolster its downtown businesses and attractions, attract new housing opportunities and promote a pedestrian and bike friendly atmosphere. Public meetings will be held Thursday, Jan. 23, at 6:30 p.m.; Saturday, Jan. 25, at 2 p.m.; and Monday, Jan. 27, at 6:30 p.m.  All meetings will be held at the South Chattanooga Recreation Center at 1151 West 40th Street.  Community leaders, residents and business owners are all invited and encouraged to attend.  Those interested in participating in the process should R.S.V.P. to

“For over 25 years, Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise has focused on building and sustaining Chattanooga neighborhoods,” said Martina Guilfoil, chief executive officer of Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise.  “With help from both the Lyndhurst and Benwood Foundations, we are now able to focus on what St. Elmo will look like in the future and how it will best serve the community’s needs.”

Areas under consideration for the planning exercise spans roughly from the base of Lookout Mountain to West Avenue, and both 37th and 40th Streets. Though the design will focus on the town center of St. Elmo, located at the intersection of Tennessee and St. Elmo Avenues, it will also heavily concentrate on how that location serves and connects with surrounding areas such as South Broad, Historic St. Elmo, Alton Park, Piney Woods, and Lookout Mountain. The initial planning session will kick off with a presentation from Mike Watkins and his design team leading into a conversation amongst attendees about their vision for the neighborhood.  The design team will meet again with the public midway through the charrette on Saturday, during which they will seek feedback of their work thus far.  The charrette will culminate with a final public meeting where Mike Watkins will present the design team’s design recommendations for the St. Elmo town center.

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