High-end riverfront condos planned in multimillion-dollar Chattanooga project

Staff photo by Mike Pare / A tract of land on Riverside Drive just past the Boathouse Rotisserie & Raw Bar is proposed to hold a 45-unit condominium complex. The site is shown in this March 22, 2022, photo.

A high-end condominium complex that would be one of the largest such projects to go up on Chattanooga's waterfront is planned for a tract of land off Riverside Drive.

The four-level, 45-unit structure is proposed on property near the Boathouse Rotisserie & Raw Bar at 1497 and 1521 Riverside Dr., according to documents filed with Chattanooga-Hamilton County Regional Planning Agency.

"The riverfront frontage and the location on the Riverwalk - it's a prime location right there," said Cardon Smith, a vice president for developer Fletcher Bright Co.

A zoning change is sought for the 3.4-acre site from M-1 Manufacturing to C-2 Commercial. The proposed change is expected to be heard next month by the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Regional Planning Commission.

Plans are to provide a mix of differently sized units, with the smallest at two bedrooms, Smith said about the multimillion-dollar project.

"We're excited about it," he said in a telephone interview. "It's a good one. It will be a higher-end product better suited for condos than apartments."

Smith said it's too early to know price points on the units or the total project cost.

Justin Dumsday, a partner at River Street Architecture, said the concept is to build "resort-style condos."

"It's going to be unique to Chattanooga," he said in a phone interview.

Dumsday said each unit is to have a private balcony and all the master bedrooms will offer views of the Tennessee River. The Chattanooga Golf and Country Club sits across the river and the building will be oriented toward downtown's bridges, he said.

If the rezoning receives approval from the planning panel and the city council, work could start later this year with completion coming in about 16 months, Dumsday said.

Smith said the ground floor of the structure will include a lobby, fitness center and shared work area. Also, plenty of parking is planned, the developer said.

"We're providing a parking space per bed and additional overall parking as well," he said.

Smith said the market still remains strong for new residential units in Chattanooga.

Chattanooga experienced a record sales year in 2021. In the fourth quarter, Chattanooga posted a median home price gain of 15.5%, which was even bigger than the U.S. average, figures show.

Still, Chattanooga's median home price in the quarter of $269,900 was priced 25.4% below the U.S. average.

Chattanooga-based Fletcher Bright Co. already has plans to build 25 condos on the site of the former Nikki's Drive-Inn restaurant on Cherokee Boulevard.

Earlier, the company put up a $7 million, 26-unit condo complex nearby at 411 Fairpoint St.

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