$2.5B Waterfront Project Coming to Nashville

Ewing Properties plans to create a new mixed-use gateway to Music City.

  • the Riverside, Nashville
  • the Riverside, Nashville
  • the Riverside, Nashville
  • the Riverside, Nashville
  • the Riverside, Nashville

Eight years in the making, a $2.5 billion mixed-use community is now in line to sprout up along the Cumberland River in Nashville. Real estate developer Ewing Properties just announced that it will build the Riverside, a 5 million-square-foot, live-work-play destination that will spark the creation of a riverfront corridor in the northwest section of the city.

the Riverside will take shape on 65 coveted acres just 3 miles from downtown Nashville, which will be accessible from the project via water taxi. Ewing Properties has collaborated with city and other local officials and residents from the beginning to ensure that the development encompasses the most desirable and successful offerings.

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Architecture firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill is on the project team to spearhead the design of the community, which will feature ample residential, restaurant and retail offerings, as well as an office component, all with a focus on walkability and transportation equity.

“We are currently going through the metro planning process, which will ultimately dictate timelines. However, our plan is for the Riverside to be constructed in stages over time to best accommodate city growth and local needs and tenant requirements, which will be market-driven,” Tony Ewing of Ewing Properties told Commercial Property Executive.

In addition to the traditional elements, the Riverside, a community-centric project, will offer multi-layered public spaces totaling more than 25 acres. Ewing Properties will capitalize on the land’s unique topography and ecology to create three distinct public parks. Summit Park, Ravine Park and River Terraces will each allow for specific activities, including concerts, festivals, use of wooded trails, outdoor dining and boating activities.

Rolling out the welcome mat

Ewing Properties envisions the Riverside as a new waterfront gateway to Nashville and expects it to serve as a magnet not just for current residents, but for new residents—and businesses. With the project in the earliest stages, however, the company has not made any decisions on office square footage just yet.

“Through the [standard permit] process, we are looking for flexibility that the market will dictate,” Ewing said. “Working with Councilwoman [Kyonzté] Toombs, we know that she and her district are looking for rooftops; they’re looking for a ‘live, work and play’ development, which this SP will provide.”

Nashville’s office sector remains in recovery mode. Leasing activity continues to rebound from pandemic lows, with year-to-date activity surpassing totals seen during the global financial crisis and early 2000s, according to a third quarter report by Avison Young. With more than 750,000 square feet of leasing activity in the third quarter, cumulative activity for the year reached 3.3 million square feet. And Nashville recorded positive net absorption during the third quarter with help from high tenant demand for Class A space in the urban core.

The fourth quarter is looking promising as well. In October, Southwest Value Partners, developer of the $1 billion Nashville Yards mixed-use project, secured a lease with a law firm for 180,000 square feet at the project’s first multi-tenant office tower.

“As always, in real estate development, developers need to be flexible enough and their business decisions should be market-driven,” Ewing noted. As for courting companies to relocate or expand at the Riverside, he said that job will be a team effort. “We won’t do it alone. The quality of our development, led by Ewing Properties and Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, and the attraction of the great City of Nashville will cause that to happen.”

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