Patten Parkway’s Ross Hotel’s New Future

Monday, April 28, 2014
Ross Hotel
Ross Hotel
- photo by Wes Schultz

The Ross Hotel, the former site of Yesterday’s, has been purchased for rehabilitation and reuse as residential space in City Center. This piece of Chattanooga history at the corner of Georgia Avenue and Patten Parkway will be turned into workforce housing with first floor animation through retail and/or commercial activity.

Acquired by River City Company with the support of the Benwood Foundation as a strategic site for more rental housing in the core of our city, this acquisition was driven from two studies: the recent Downtown Chattanooga Study focused on housing, retail and office market opportunities and the City Center Plan.

The Downtown Chattanooga Study found there is a pent-up demand for housing downtown which could fill almost 900 units of varying types annually. The City Center Plan, which was unveiled in early 2014 and developed by a team of local and regional planners with input from over 600 Chattanoogans, spotlighted 23 current buildings and potential infill sites within City Center that could potentially accommodate over 1,260 housing units – the Ross Hotel being one of those.

Although the redevelopment of this building will provide much needed rental housing in the district, this project also aims to assist in sparking excitement and interest in other potential projects on Patten Parkway and M.L. King from both the private and public sectors for continued redevelopment of this area.

Not only are Patten Parkway and M.L. King prime areas with significant development potential both commercially and residentially but also can act as a thoroughfare from UTC to channel students into downtown.

“The City Center Plan highlighted the amazing opportunity we have to take underutilized buildings and turn them into much needed workforce housing.  We’re excited to lead the charge, as we have for a variety of downtown development over the years,” said Kim White, president and CEO of River City Company. “The Ross Hotel is just one of the many buildings in City Center that can be sites for desired housing.  We hope other building owners see the demand and follow suit.”

A request for proposals (RFP) will be sent to qualified developers for the project, and plans for the site will be announced when available.


Georgia Northwestern Turning Home Construction Green

A year-long construction project designed to teach how to build homes in an earth-friendly way reached completion last Thursday on Georgia Northwestern Technical College’s Gordon County Campus in Calhoun, Ga. Leaders from across the region, participating vendors, and college administration were on hand for the ribbon-cutting of the new EarthCraft home built at the college.   ... (click for more)

Dream House Winner Creates Private Foundation To Fund Animal Rescue Work In Bradley County

When Jodie Westwood learned she had won Chattanooga’s St. Jude’s Dream Home earlier this year, she knew immediately that some of her winnings would fund work to improve conditions for dogs and cats in Bradley County. After all, Ms. Westwood had already been donating money and in-kind resources to shelters and rescues, volunteering, and turning her dining room into a makeshift ... (click for more)

1 Dies, 1 Critically Injured In North Chattanooga House Fire

For the second time in three days, a house fire has resulted in tragedy with a 35-year-old woman dying and a man critically injured in North Chattanooga. At 10:13 a.m. on Wednesday, Chattanooga firefighters were dispatched to a reported house fire with entrapment at 220 Houser St. The first firefighters on the scene saw flames shooting out windows and part of the roof. Having ... (click for more)

Appeal Dropped In $25 Million Lawsuit Filed Against Hennen's Restaurant By Lisa Barnes

An appeal has been dropped of a Circuit Court jury verdict that found Hennen's Restaurant not at fault in a $25 million lawsuit brought by Lisa Barnes. Circuit Court officials said the appeal was "voluntarily" dropped. It had been set to be reviewed by the Tennessee Court of Appeals. The verdict in the courtroom of Judge Neil Thomas in early February came at the end of ... (click for more)

Lawlessness At Heritage Park

As a frequent visitor at Heritage Park in East Brainerd, I must say that the situation is becoming slightly out of control.  To start, parking is atrocious.  The unpaved lot contains nothing but loose gravel which has naturally given way to divots in the ground assuring you a few bumps.  Why isn't this area smoothed out?  It's not worth parking there anyways ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: A Grand Thanksgiving Feast

I’m not really sure how it all came about but a few days before Thanksgiving last year, what was usually a crowded table had dwindled down to just Mother, Aunt Martha and me. Just the idea of getting dressed up made both of them tired, which happens when you are 89 and 87, respectively, and the thought of preparing the traditional feast brought only further groans so I announced ... (click for more)