East Bank to Transform into Affordable, Mixed-Income Neighborhood

Nashville's East Bank development prioritizes long-term affordable housing.

Nashville’s East Bank, surrounding the new football stadium, is set to undergo a significant transformation into a mixed-income, vibrant community, following a proposed Master Developer Agreement submitted by the O’Connell administration to the Metro Council on February 23, 2024. The agreement, resulting from a collaboration between Metro and The Fallon Company, outlines the development of a 30-acre Initial Development Area, focusing on the construction of over 1,500 housing units with varied levels of affordability.

Derived from the Imagine East Bank Vision Plan, which was adopted unanimously by the Metro Planning Commission in October 2022, the proposal aims to fulfill the community’s desire for a thriving mixed-income neighborhood. This vision was shaped by extensive community engagement over two years, underscoring the importance of inclusivity and accessibility in the area’s development.

The ambitious affordable housing strategy detailed in the proposed legislation mandates The Fallon Company to construct 1,550 housing units with a schedule that ensures the delivery of 300 affordable residential units within two years of site availability. An additional 400 and 550 units will be introduced in six and nine years, respectively, with a minimum of 10% being affordable. Furthermore, the plan includes the construction of another 300 affordable units in conjunction with the East Bank Transit Center, following the adjustment of James Robertson Parkway.

Central to achieving these affordable housing targets is the utilization of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC), a federal incentive encouraging the development of affordable rental housing for low-income households. The proposal specifies that two-thirds of the units in designated affordable buildings will cater to households earning 60% or below of the Area Median Income (AMI), with at least 25% reserved for those at the 30% AMI level. The remaining units will serve households with incomes in the 61-80% AMI range.

Highlighting the long-term vision for the East Bank, the development agreement stipulates that the affordability conditions of these residential units must be maintained for 99 years, ensuring sustained accessibility for future generations of Nashvillians. This commitment represents a significant milestone in Nashville’s pursuit of affordable housing solutions.

Additionally, the development plan includes measures to preserve the quality of life in the new neighborhood, such as limiting the number of hotels within the Initial Development Area and introducing legislation to regulate short-term rentals and bar concentrations. These provisions align with the community’s aspirations for a welcoming, inclusive neighborhood that serves the needs of all Nashvillians, as voiced during the Imagine East Bank planning process.

The proposed Master Developer Agreement between Metro and The Fallon Company marks a crucial step towards realizing a mixed-use, mixed-income community on the East Bank, setting a precedent for affordable housing development in Nashville.

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