Preservation Apathy At The Choo Choo

Thursday, June 29, 2017
The little Terminal Building at the Choo Choo
The little Terminal Building at the Choo Choo

Most have forgotten that the genesis of the rebirth of the riverfront, downtown, and the north shore was a historic preservation issue: the Walnut Street Bridge.   

Having participated in decades of urban success sustained by our historic fabric, I am incredulous that not a finger has been lifted to preserve the little Terminal Building at the Choo Choo.   

And I am saddened and disappointed that the developers of the project can be so cavalier about destroying the established architectural history of the citizens of Chattanooga. 

As much a part of the history of the railway station as the grand dome, the building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1972. It is scheduled for demolition next week.  

Preservation apathy is not what we envisioned 35 years ago, and laments for the loss of our history are not nearly enough to save it. 

Andrew Smith, AIA, NCARB
Cornerstones Professor in Residence, UTC



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