The City Council on Tuesday night approved rezoning for a "transformational" project at the former Alstom property, including allowing one building to be as tall as 20 stories.
Victor Dover, who is leading the planning for The Bend on over 100 acres, said the original request was for the 20-story "signature" building near the riverfront, along with several 12-story buildings.
However, he said Mayor Andy Berke and the staff of the Regional Planning Agency had contacted the group asking that it consider less tall buildings. He said the group, in response, said it could go along with the tallest building being 16 stories and others 10 stories. A building closest to Riverfront Parkway would be five stories.
He was asked by Chairman Erskine Oglesby if the group preferred its original request. Mr. Dover said it would be happy with either scenario.
Chairman Oglesby then moved for allowing the taller buildings, and it was seconded by Darrin Ledford. The council then approved the higher buildings.
“We very much appreciate the overwhelming community support we’ve received as our vision for a diverse development comes to fruition,” said Jimmy White, co-owner of Urban Story Ventures. “We are grateful for City Council Chairman Erskine Oglesby’s guidance and expertise throughout this project. In addition, continued support from the Chattanooga City Council, Mayor Andy Berke and Chattanooga-Hamilton County Regional Planning Agency allows us to create this vibrant destination for Chattanooga residents and visitors.”
The Bend, designed by Dover, Kohl & Partners, is projected to add up to $3 billion in investments, over 5,000 jobs and more than $11 million in annual tax revenue to the city and county, it was stated.
Commercial, residential, office, civic, entertainment and event space will be constructed over the next decade with the first phase beginning as early as 2020.
Mr. Dover said the project will have clustered "intense" development at some points, as well as interspersed parks and rows of townhomes.
He said the project will open up a large section of the riverfront that has been locked away for 150 years.