Chattanooga officials want Tubman site rezoned, residents caution not so fast

Staff Photo by Tim Barber/Chattanooga Times Free Press - October 13, 2014 The former Harriett Tubman homes are in the process of being torn down.

After several years of relative silence, the city of Chattanooga is quietly beginning to tell neighborhood leaders its long-term plans for the former Harriet Tubman public housing site, which the city purchased in 2014.

On Monday, at a gathering of neighborhood leaders, and Saturday, at an Avondale neighborhood association meeting, staff from the city's office of economic and community development outlined an aggressive timeline for rezoning the former Tubman tract from residential to light industrial, or M1, with two conditions. The site cannot be used for poultry processing and the buyer must create a green buffer along Roanoke Avenue.

"It retains multifamily zoning. That makes it less attractive for companies looking to purchase the site," Charita Allen, the city's deputy administrator for economic development, told the group gathered Saturday at the Avondale Recreation Center.