Category Archives: Neighborhood Spotlight

Neighborhood Spotlight: Wedgewood-Houston

Once an industrial area filled with warehouses, factories and garages in a rundown part of town rarely visited, Wedgewood-Houston has experienced a redevelopment renaissance over the last few years as artists and creatives have flocked to the area. Two miles south of downtown, Wedgewood-Houston (AKA WeHo) boasts lower rent and housing prices relative to the nearby neighborhoods of the Gulch, 12South and Belmont.

The area’s history dates back to the American Civil War. It’s home to Fort Negley, the largest fortification built by the Union after the fall of Nashville in 1862. The abandoned Greer Stadium, the former home of the Nashville Sounds with its guitar-shaped scoreboard, sits just south of the site.

The most historic building still standing in the neighborhood is the Merritt Mansion on Humphreys Street, purchased a few years ago and converted into a recording studio by Nashville-based rock band Kings of Leon. The home was built in 1840 for Sally Merritt, the youngest daughter of Captain John Rains, and her husband, Gibson. Rains reached Nashville with James Robertson on Christmas Day, 1779, and purchased a 640-acre farm in the neighborhood.

Many of the neighborhood’s most notable restaurants and businesses embrace the area’s industrial history: Award-winning restaurant and bar Bastion is in a former jam factory; Dozen Bakery resides in a former truck repair shop; and David Lusk Gallery is in the building of a former truck mechanic. Other can’t-miss WeHo restaurants include Santa’s Pub, with its year-round Christmas decorations and top-notch karaoke, as well as Gabby’s, Clawson’s Pub & Deli and Smokin’ Thighs.

WeHo is also all about the arts. Popular among residents and visitors is the robust variety of art galleries and creative spaces located within a few blocks of each other. Some credit the David Lusk Gallery on Hagan Street, which opened in 2014, as the spark for the recent influx of redevelopment. In addition to David Lusk are Zeitgeist, Hunter + Gatherer, Sherrick & Paul and Julia Martin Gallery, all of which participate in the free monthly art walk. Named Arts & Music at Wedgewood-Houston, the event is held the first Saturday of each month, coinciding with the Downtown First Saturday Art Crawl. There are also multiple spaces for independent artists and creatives to set up shop, including in Fort Houston and the May Hosiery Co-Op complex, which is currently undergoing a major overhaul. The redeveloped complex, which contains multiple masonry buildings, will eventually include 80,000 square feet of office space, three restaurants, seven retail storefronts, rooftop space and a possible hotel.

Unique to the area is the prevalence of live-work housing, with a retail component on the first floor and a loft or living area on the second floor. New homes are also popping up as developers take advantage of the lower cost of land, and home prices are rapidly on the rise as the neighborhood continues to gain popularity.

We look forward to seeing what is next in store for the up-and-coming Wedgewood-Houston neighborhood.

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Neighborhood Spotlight: Charlotte Avenue Corridor

Through the heart of Nashville runs a familiar street that crosses through several up-and-coming neighborhoods, including Sylvan Park, Sylvan Heights and The Nations. Where Charlotte passes through these neighborhoods you’ll find a bustling area lined with some of Nashville’s best new restaurants, apartments and businesses.

In the early 1800s, Charlotte Avenue – formerly known as Cedar Street – linked the southern steps of the Capitol all the way to the western edge of town. The construction of James Robertson Parkway later broke up this direct route. The street name was changed from Cedar to Charlotte because it ultimately leads to the town of Charlotte in Dickson County – which was named for the wife of James Robertson.

The 1980s and 90s saw a Charlotte Avenue that was much like the rest of Nashville, run-down and in need of some serious overhauling. In fact, a key landmark in the neighborhood was the historic Tennessee state prison. Since then, the area has been part of massive urban redevelopment projects that have made Nashville into the city it is now.

Many of the remaining warehouses and industrial buildings from the “olden days” are now being repurposed for other projects. In 2016, we started development on a former industrial site at 5400 Centennial Boulevard in The Nations. The development, which broke ground last year as Silo Bend, centers on a 200-ft tall silo and will include single-family homes and apartments, as well as mixed-use space for offices, retail, restaurants and more.

Groundbreaking ceremony at Silo Bend

Today, the section between 40th and 52nd Avenues has sprung up with many trendy new dining options, including Salt & Vine, Double Dogs and M.L. Rose, as well as classics such as Hattie B’s Hot Chicken.

And the neighborhood has completely turned around from its run-down days to a neighborhood with a higher concentration of “urban sophisticates” than 96 percent of U.S. neighborhoods.

From a once industrial part of the city to a blossoming town center, Charlotte Avenue has become a hot spot for families young and old to shop, eat and live. As property values continue to rise, it is quickly becoming one of the places to be. There is no doubt it will continue to expand outward, but in the meantime, do yourself a favor and try some of those delicious restaurants.

Neighborhood Spotlight: Hillsboro Village

Located between Belmont and Vanderbilt universities, Hillsboro Village is an urban neighborhood that features a variety of bars, restaurants and boutique stores.

The neighborhood began to develop in the early 1900s when streetcar lines were extended out to Belmont, which attracted city residents to move to newly  developed homes away from the overcrowded city. By the 1920s, it had become a booming suburban area that was a short and inexpensive ride away from downtown.

Hillsboro Village is considered one of Nashville’s most walkable neighborhoods, making it a great place for residents and tourists to visit the many Nashville dining staples located there, including Pancake Pantry, Provence Breads & Cafe and Fido. It’s also home to the historic Belcourt Theater, where visitors can see independent films, live music and theater productions.

Belcourt Village Rendering

Because of its proximity to Belmont and Vanderbilt, college students and young adults make up a larger portion of the local population. It’s also a family-friendly area with a larger selection of single-family homes than many surrounding neighborhoods, as well as being home to Fannie Mae Dees Park, which features a playground, walking paths, picnic areas and, of course, the famous Dragon sculpture.

Real estate is on the rise as young adults, families and businesses look to move to the bustling neighborhood. Southeast Venture is currently working with Elmington Capital Group to develop a mixed-use space – to be called Belcourt Village – on Belcourt Avenue across from the historic theater. It’s slated to have ground-floor retail, nearly 24,000 square feet of office space and two residential floors with approximately 25-30 apartments.

The development will be next door to Elmington Capital’s other recently acquired real estate in Hillsboro Village – the former location of Sam’s Sports Grill and Boscos Restaurant & Brewing Company at 1803 21st Ave. S. A boutique clothing store, Altar’d State, and the Austin-based Hopdoddy Burger Bar opened in these spaces earlier this year.

Southeast Venture is also helping food truck staple Bare Naked Bagels set up a permanent location in Hillsboro Village by the end of this year.

As with many of Nashville’s neighborhoods, Hillsboro Village is a hub for new developments, businesses and residents – and we’re excited to be a part of its continued growth.

Neighborhood Spotlight: Green Hills

One of Nashville’s most affluent communities can be found just a few miles south of downtown. Nestled between the 12 South and Belle Meade neighborhoods, Green Hills is a bustling community that welcomes both natives and newcomers to share in its many shopping, dining and recreational opportunities.

Green Hills began as a small community in the 1930s. After World War II, it grew significantly as people began building houses in anticipation of new business activity throughout the area.

The neighborhood is most widely known for its upscale shopping, such as the Hill Center – an open-air shopping concept – and the Mall at Green Hills, which opened in 1955 as a strip mall. Since then, the mall has undergone major expansions and renovations so that it now holds more than 100 stores and restaurants combined. Green Hills is also home to an iconic music venue, the Bluebird Cafe, which opened in 1982 and welcomes more than 70,000 visitors each year.

The community is located just a short distance from Nashville’s three major universities – Belmont, Lipscomb and Vanderbilt. College students and families alike can be seen at the local movie theater and nearby restaurants.

Radnor Lake State Park rests on the outskirts of Green Hills and boasts abundant wildlife, scenic hiking trails and numerous photo opportunities.

Real estate in the area is booming as more people and businesses look for places to reside within Davidson County. Southeast Venture’s architecture team is currently designing a new multi-family development in the heart of the shopping district with plans for a LEED-certified “green” roof.

At the Hill Center, Southeast Venture helped Endodontic Associates find its new home and provided interior design services to arrange the space according to its needs. A local foster care organization, Monroe Harding, also recently enlisted Southeast Venture to sell its property and use the proceeds to expand its youth services.

Green Hills is a popular neighborhood that will experience sustainable growth as new developments and renovations take place. And areas like this are sure to increase in value as demand for space in and around Nashville continues to rise.

Neighborhood Spotlight: East Nashville

Nashville is home to many different neighborhoods, each with its own sense of style and personality. One of the city’s many fast-growing districts is East Nashville—a diverse corner of Music City that, over the past five years, has changed tremendously and continues to develop, welcoming new urban restaurants, eclectic shopping and a blossoming real estate market.

From the dainty Shoppes on Fatherland to the Beer Works scene on Trinity Lane, East Nashville has something for everyone. Its creative vibe sets the area apart from the rest of the city, and its charm has caught the attention of tastemakers around the country, including Vogue Magazine, which calls East Nashville our city’s “coolest neighborhood.”

Development is flourishing, and one of the newest buildings to pop up in the district is Southeast Venture’s Eastside Heights. With nearly 250 units, this apartment complex offers a sky lounge with a view of the city, a 24-hour fitness center, an outdoor movie theater, retail space and more. Just across the bridge from downtown, Eastside Heights is only a five-minute bike ride to some of the city’s most popular attractions.

Most notably, a massive yellow and black mural of the word “EAST” covers over 4,500 square feet of the property’s western-facing exterior wall. Thanks to its prime location next to I-24, the mural welcomes about 100,000 vehicles each day.

East Nashville

Image: Aerial Innovations

Southeast Venture again enlisted the help of the Nashville Walls Project to commission the artwork. Founded by Brian Grief and Eva Boros in 2014, the Nashville Walls Project sought to expand street art beyond major cities, such as San Francisco, Los Angeles and Miami, and introduce building murals to Nashville.

“Nashville is a great arts city,” said Brian Greif. “It’s known mostly for music, but there’s also a strong graffiti scene. The Nashville Walls Project has helped add to the visual dialogue of the city and opened up new opportunities for both local and international artists.”

East Nashville

Image: Aerial Innovations

Southeast Venture collaborated with local artists and design firm Sideshow to develop the concept, which was painted by Jon Buko and Meghan Wood of Nashville’s “I Saw the Sign” artists group.

“The Eastside Heights mural really captures the essence of East Nashville,” Grief added. “We’re thrilled with how it turned out and know that it will stand as a gateway to the community for years to come.”

Neighborhood Spotlight: 12 South

From its vintage charm to its modern-chic vibes, 12 South is a popular dining, shopping and people-watching hub for Nashville natives and visitors alike.

Before it was carved out as a separate neighborhood in the 1990s, 12 South was considered part of the Belmont – Hillsboro neighborhood, which was previously known as Waverly Belmont – a community that developed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries in response to the advent of the streetcar, which allowed Nashville to expand into the surrounding farmland. The large farms that once occupied the Granny White Pike area have since been replaced with commercial retail and residential buildings. Evidence of Waverly Belmont’s rich history can still be seen in its traditional churches and foursquare homes.

In the 1990s, an alliance of Hawkins Partners, 1221, MDHA and others, including real estate brokers Joel Solomon and Mark Deutschmann, created and implemented a plan to designate 12 South as a separate neighborhood. The vision of these urban pioneers led to 12 South becoming the thriving community it is today. Now, boutiques and quaint restaurants line the streets, drawing in the business of tourists and locals alike.

12 South Flats

12 South Flats

The 12 South Farmers’ Market is held on Tuesdays in Sevier Park – at the south end of the district – and food trucks, vendors and music acts line the park as visitors enjoy the sights and sounds of the event.

Sevier Park is also home to the historic Sunnyside mansion, a home built in 1852. The home was most notably owned by Mary Benton, whose husband Jesse is known for holding a pistol fight with President Andrew Jackson. During the Civil War, Sunnyside sat between the Union and Confederate sides. Over 150 years since its foundation was laid, the yellow house still stands atop a hill inside the park for visitors to see.

12 South Flats

12 South Flats

Real estate here is highly sought after, and Southeast Venture’s 12 South Flats is a prime example of the charming residential spaces available in the area. The modern property is a mixed-use building featuring nearly 10,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space and 90 residential units. The property offers a variety of floor plans with a luxurious loft experience, and the location can’t be beat.

The rising popularity of the 12 South district has made the secret of its charm impossible to keep, but the charismatic neighborhood will forever remain one of Nashville’s greatest treasures.

Neighborhood Spotlight: The Nations

An area’s history often defines its future, and this certainly rings true for one West Nashville neighborhood, The Nations. Once a meeting place for Native American tribal nations – hence its name – The Nations community became known over the years as home to Nashvillians who worked in the automobile, lumber and agricultural industries.

In recent years, commercial and residential real estate opportunities in the area have grown tremendously. Thanks to the boom in popularity, residents and business owners continue to flock to the West Nashville neighborhood, building thousands of new homes and starting a number of new businesses, and transforming the quiet, hard-working neighborhood into a local hotspot for both natives and tourists.

Arguably the most notable landmark of The Nations is an icon of the community’s industrial past. A 200-foot tall abandoned grain silo sits in the eastern portion of a 37.7-acre site, being developed by Southeast Venture. The project is named Silo Bend in honor of the silo and the property’s location across from a bend of the Cumberland River.

The silo is a symbol of the community—a monument of the past—and can be seen from miles away. That’s why Southeast Venture, in conjunction with Brian Greif and the Nashville Walls Project, arranged for a massive mural to adorn its side.

The Nations

Photo credit: Brian Siskind, Those Drones

Together, they enlisted Australian artist Guido van Helten, who is known for his larger-than-life portrait paintings around the world.

Van Helten came to Nashville in May and spent a week in The Nations community—meeting with residents, learning about the culture and developing his concept for the mural. It was then he met Lee D. Estes, an elderly resident of The Nations, who was volunteering at the Saint Luke’s Community Center. The 91-year-old resident has called The Nations “home” for his entire life and struck Van Helten as a the perfect subject to capture the essence of the community.

The Nations

Photo credit: Brian Siskind, Those Drones

The Nations

Photo credit: Brian Siskind, Those Drones

Guido completed the work over two weeks in May 2017. The enormous silo mural can now be seen from miles away and has already become a well-known landmark of the up-and-coming development and surrounding community.

Southeast Venture has bigger plans for Silo Bend than the massive mural. A 193-unit apartment complex is currently under construction, and mixed-use commercial space and single-family homes will also fill the property, inviting more newcomers to The Nations. This development will undoubtedly spring even more life into the growing Nations district as it becomes the latest in Nashville’s run of trending hot-spots.