Neighborhoods And Good Urban Design - And Response (3)

Monday, January 8, 2018

Chattanooga is enjoying a robust movement to plan developments in a number of downtown neighborhoods, and there is good reason to believe that well-designed development should be welcomed. The opposite is also true, that bad or poorly designed development should not be welcomed, especially if it seriously degrades the existing neighborhood. 

In the case of a sought-after rezoning in a long-established Northside Neighborhood, the proposed abandonment of the historic plat of the community allowing 12 single family Lots to be replaced by over 30 RTZ Zoned Townhouses, now completely surrounded by the existing Single Family Neighborhood, is not Good Urban Design on a number of levels. 

It certainly does not create any positive results for the existing homeowners, and more than doubles the existing allowable density at the direct expense of neighborhood values. The existing infrastructure cannot currently support such a dense development, and the lack of adequate parking on the proposed site will be a burden on the neighborhood forever. 

This is not the time to defer a decision on this matter. It is the clear responsibility of the public bodies, the Planning Commission and the City Council, to say no to this ill-advised plan now; it is not in the public interest. The developer knew exactly what he was buying, which was 12 lots in a long established community. 

This is neither the time nor the place to let bad development degrade our neighborhoods. This is not The Chattanooga Way. Just say no to RTZ here. 

Garnet Chapin
Urban Designer and
Northside Neighborhood Association Officer  

* * *  

I couldn't agree with Mr. Chapin more. I've seen countless examples of Greentech Homes coming in and buying vacant lots in desirable neighborhoods, knowing good and well that it will cost a premium to build on them. Everyone knows that the reason these lots are vacant is because of the increased cost to build single family detached homes on difficult sites. These types of developers are utilizing these less desirable lots to argue hardships that necessitate a rezoning. Their purpose is to make money and it shouldn't be at the expense of others.  

Mr. Chapin makes a great point that shoehorning in more density onto an already burdened infrastructure is poor planning. I will add that the reason that these zoning restrictions are in place are to protect the existing. That includes the existing neighbors, existing home values and existing city owned infrastructure.  

The request to switch to from R-1 to R-T/Z should be denied.  

If we feed the strays, they will keep coming back.  

Tim Giordano 

* * * 

Sad to say, Mr. Chapin, but that ship has sailed.  Take a look at the north end of Dartmouth Street, Hixson Pike S curves, Tremont Street, Baker Street, Frazier Avenue....I could go on but what would be served? 

It is clear who and what determines Chattanooga's course of action as it relates to developmental "planning".  Needless to say, it isn't the residents.

Darlene Kilgore 

* * * 

Garnet Chapin has devoted so much of his time and talents to this city that it owes him a debt that can never be paid even if there were an unlikely will to do so.  We have lost so much of what I loved about Chattanooga as a child, not the least of which was that birdhouse on barn roofs telling us to "See Ruby Falls."  Today I fear that we may lose the ability to see the Tennessee River unless we go high upon the mountains. 

Stop the high rises along the riverfront.  That river belongs to the taxpayers along with the scenic beauty of our mountains and ridges that caused us to locate here and help build it over several generations . . . five to be exact in my family.

Charlotte Parton
Chattanooga 




Supporting The Priorities Of The U.S. Department Of Justice

Since being sworn in as United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee on November 21, 2017, I have been working diligently to support the Department of Justice priorities outlined by United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions as well as the mission of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Tennessee.  Currently, the top five DOJ priorities ... (click for more)

Thank You To The Lookout Mountain Public Works

A big shout out to the great employees of the public works department. You have done an excellent job of keeping our roads clear (while sacrificing time with your own families)! You and our police department continue to keep us safe and sound. Thank you, thank you, from the whole Lookout Mountain community. Thomas Dickinson (click for more)

1 Person Injured In Duplex Fire In East Lake Wednesday Night

One person was injured when fire broke out in a duplex Wednesday night in East Lake. The Chattanooga Fire Department received the alarm at  11:53  p.m. on  Wednesday  and responded to the 4800 block of General Thomas Boulevard with several fire companies.   When the first firefighters arrived on the scene, Captain Chris Cordes with Engine 9 said ... (click for more)

City Council Considering New 2-Year $600,000 Contract With Father To The Fatherless

The City Council is considering whether to approve a new two-year contract of up to $600,000 with Father to the Fatherless for the Violence Reduction Initiative. Council members had a number of questions during a lengthy hearing on Tuesday afternoon, but Police Chief David Roddy said the program has helped bring a 35 percent reduction in gun-related shootings and a 16 percent ... (click for more)

UTC Women At Wofford Thursday

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga will look to put another mark in the win column with a Thursday evening tilt at Wofford. Chattanooga and Wofford began competition in 1996 when the Terriers joined the Southern Conference. After winning the first four, including one in overtime, the Mocs lost in the SoCon Tournament to Wofford. After sweeping the Terriers in the 1998-99 ... (click for more)

UTC's Boykin Named Wrestler Of The Week

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga senior Scottie Boykin is the Southern Conference Wrestler of the Week for all competition from Jan. 10-16, the league office announced Wednesday. This is the league-high third Moc to win the honor this season.  It is the second career award for Boykin.  Boykin, a native of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, went 4-0 in the Virginia ... (click for more)