ActivePaper Archive HOUSING - Chattanooga, 5/13/2018

CALLING DOWNTOWN HOME

Downtown Chattanooga living offers more options; 3,000 new apartments, condos added to central city

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STAFF PHOTOS BY TIM BARBER

A large table centers the resident lounge at Vista Cameron Harbor.

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A one-bedroom apartment has an open feeling inside the Maclellan Apartments, 721 Broad St.

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The lobby of the Maclellan Building in Chattanooga.

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Downtown living at 10/North provides a large living and dining area in this one-bedroom unit facing Cherokee Boulevard.

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The club room at the Maclellan Apartments is available for use by apartment tenants.

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The resident lounge at Vista Cameron Harbor is a highlight of the numerous amenities at the new westside complex on the Tennessee River.

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Left: Downtown living at 10/North provides an outdoor patio in this one-bedroom unit facing Cherokee Blvd.

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The kitchen and bar adjoins the living area in this one-bedroom unit at 10/North on Cherokee Blvd.

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Right: A courtyard saltwater pool is surrounded by apartments at Vista Cameron Harbor.

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Penny Leal says that early this decade, few people wanted to live in downtown Chattanooga and there weren’t a lot of housing options in the central city.

“It’s so different now,” said Leal, a leasing consultant for the Vista Cameron Harbor apartments which were recently added along downtown’s waterfront.

With more than 3,000 apartment units, nearly 2,000 student beds, and 250 condominiums and townhomes having recently opened or coming online within the next year or so, downtown is seeing a surge of new housing.

On Sunday, June 3, the Explore Downtown Living Tour of 14 apartment and condo developments will take place from 1-4 p.m. as the central city redevelopment group River City Co. shows some of the new apartment and condominimum choices.

The expansion of downtown housing is no more evident than at Cameron Harbor. A pair of developers have added hundreds of single-family and apartment units over the past few years off Riverfront Parkway just west of Ross’s Landing.

Vista Cameron Harbor has 224 apartments in one- and two-bedroom offerings, said Leal. Rents range from $970 to $1,700 a month per unit and the complex is 95 percent occupied, she said.

“The best thing is that it’s so close to the Tennessee Riverwalk,” Leal said about the proximity of the complex to the waterfront pedestrian path that now goes from the edge of St. Elmo to Chickamauga Dam.

It’s not just new construction that’s taking place on the downtown housing front.

The Maclellan Apartments at 701 Broad St. consists of 85 studio, one- and two-bedroom units in the 12-story former office building that was constructed in 1924, said Tara Daniels, its community manager.

“People want to be downtown,” she said, adding that the Memphis-based developer helped preserve the building that formerly was home office of Provident Life & Accident Insurance Co., which is now Unum Group, Chattanooga’s biggest locally based company.

Daniels said the monthly rent spread is from $918 to $2,000 per unit. The Maclellan is 80 percent full, she said.

One factor about The Maclellan is that resident parking is off site, either on the street or in nearby parking garages, Daniels said.

Perhaps showing that the future construction of new housing may be easing, the Maclellan’s developers have slowed the revamp of another downtown building where apartments are planned in the First Tennessee Bank tower just a couple of blocks away.

But the current wave of new housing has been spread across all parts of downtown from the North Shore to the Southside.

Behind the Chattanooga Choo Choo off Market Street, for example, a Birmingham-based group is building Bluebird Row Apartments consisting of 283 units.

Patrick Jackson, chief financial officer of Liv Development, said the first units should open around Sept. 1.

“The reception we’ve gotten from the neighboring community is awesome,” he said, adding that a lot of Southside business people are excited the complex is coming.

Jackson said rental price points are being finalized as leasing activities start next month.

He said the Southside’s walkability is a big selling point.

“We love the site because it’s really undergoing a renaissance right now,” he said. Jackson especially noted the Choo Choo area which is seeing a rebirth.

The most recent apartment building to open is 10/North on Cherokee Boulevard on the North Shore with 84 units.

Built by locally based Vision Hospitality Group, the complex offers studio, one- and two-bedroom units and has already leased 31 apartments, according to the leasing staff. Rental rates are from $995 to $1,810.

Ashley Ewing Parrott of Vision said the one bedroom units are leasing most rapidly. She cited 10/North’s location adjacent to Renaissance Park as a key benefit.

While next to Cherokee, Ewing said the apartment builders put in a lot of sound-dampening material to block road and neighbor-to-neighbor noise.

At Palmetto Place near the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, the building offers 36 units and room for 71 tenants, said Camille Stone, the property manager.

All of the units are twobedroom and one bath in size, she said. Rental rates are $850 per month per bedroom, Stone said. That price includes electric, water, wifi, and private internet, and the units are furnished, she said.

Stone said the complex at 910 E. 8th St., a block from UTC, is about 55 percent full for the summer and fall semesters. She said the apartments, which opened in fall 2017, helped with overflow housing at UTC early on. Now, she’s doing all the branding and marketing she would have done in the beginning, Stone said.

In addition to students, the apartments draw interns from Erlanger, she said.

Contact Mike Pare at mpare@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6318. Follow him on Twitter @MikePareTFP.