Revitalization plans are in motion for the former Alstom plant and adjacent buildings and land, which will reimagine this section of Chattanooga riverfront. Urban Story Ventures and new partnership, West End Property, LLC, plan to keep the Alstom Turbine plant, recruit a manufacturer and renovate the remaining area for mixed-use, which will provide living, working and recreation opportunities and create hundreds of jobs.
Jimmy White, principal in West End Property, LLC and owner of Urban Story Ventures, said, “This is the most significant resurgence of Chattanooga’s riverfront since Mayor Bob Corker implemented the 21st Century Waterfront in 2002.
The development will create hundreds of jobs, connect people to the river and create a whole new district and destination for residents and visitors. We envision a development that will be internationally recognized for its innovative approach and greatly enhance Chattanooga’s reputation as a top mid-size city.”
West End Property, LLC is engaging the nation’s leading land planners to provide input in developing the area they refer to as the West End. It is approximately 112 acres, including the former Alstom plant and adjacent land.
The Alstom property includes a LEED Gold Certified, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility with specialized equipment and 509-ton crane capacity - the highest weight capacity inland waterway crane on the Tennessee River. Two interstate access points - West Main Street and ML King Boulevard - make it highly marketable to a future manufacturer and new jobs, the group said.
Hiren Desai, part owner of West End Property, LLC and CEO of 3H Group, Inc., said, “The existing infrastructure is unlike any other property in the Southeast. It’s unique riverfront with a sophisticated plant and endless accessibility. It's time for activity to be happening in this district. We see the West End as the next frontier for Chattanooga, and its revitalization is going to attract jobs and visitors from all over."
The site adjacent to the former Alstom plant will include office spaces, restaurants and residences as well as a combination distillery, brewery and winery - a first in Tennessee. West End Property, LLC believes the resulting district will be a model for mixed-use projects that include industry alongside residential, retail and recreational areas. Inspiration for the mixed-use project comes from communities like Seaside in Florida, Navy Pier in Chicago and Venice, Italy, it was stated.
The Tennessee Riverwalk runs through the West End and the planned renovations include access for smaller watercraft like paddleboards and kayaks. Main Street and ML King Boulevard terminate at the property, creating easy connections for people to the Riverwalk and to future businesses in the West End, it was stated.
“In acquiring the property, we want to be responsible stewards of the facility, keep it in local hands and return this property to productive use,” said Mr. White. “The development of this site is important to Chattanooga’s long-term growth. We’re eager to have industry return and good-paying jobs, while adding live, work and play options for the entire district.”
West End Property, LLC has engaged CBRE to facilitate the marketing of its future vision. Sim A. Wilson III, senior vice president and principal broker of CBRE’s Chattanooga office, will lead the marketing efforts for the sites.
He said, “West End Property, LLC has been very intentional about its review and acquisition of these significant landmark properties. CBRE is very pleased to have the opportunity to use our global market breadth to present these impressive sites to future users, investors and developers.”
The entire West End will be built out over the next 10 years with work starting immediately, officials said.
Urban Story Ventures is one of Chattanooga’s largest property groups - the company’s portfolio includes properties located in downtown and midtown including Aerisyn, the Dome Building, the Edney Innovation Center, the James Building, King Street Station and Midtown Office Park.