Possible townhouses draw fire from neighbors over Southside Chattanooga parking

Possible townhouses draw fire from neighbors over Southside Chattanooga parking

April 11th, 2019 by Mike Pare in Breaking News

Updated at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 11, 2019, with more information.

“It's a boom town. We have a serious parking issue. ”
Terry Turner, Southside business operator

More housing on downtown's Southside could go up in a possible townhouse project, though it drew fire Thursday from some neighbors with one terming parking "a nightmare" in the area.

About 29 new units could be erected on the undeveloped tract that is a railroad right of way which sits off Adams Street between East Main and East 18th streets, according to the Chattanooga Form-Based Code Committee.

Several variances were sought for the potential project, which was deferred by the panel at a meeting.

Justin Tirsun of Chazen Engineering said a railroad company owns the property and is looking at what possibly could take place on the site.

But John Petrey, who lives in the area, said parking already is a concern and he worried such a new project would worsen the problem.

"I have no problem with development," said Petrey. Calling parking in the area "a nightmare," he noted that people will park in his neighborhood if the potential new project is built.

"It will make it worse and worse," Petrey said.

Terry Turner, who operates a business in the area, said he has watched the Southside develop over the years.

"It's a boom town," he said. "We have a serious parking issue."

Also, Turner said, he has seen the area near the proposed development under water during heavy rains.

In addition, he said, homeless people currently tend to gravitate to the area near the proposed site that's adjacent to a rail line.

Tirsun said that he has already met with the neighborhood association, but he plans to follow up on the concerns expressed Thursday.

The Southside is experiencing an array of new housing with more than 1,000 apartment units under construction or recently opened.

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


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