Farragut Mayor Ron Williams, an engineer by profession, is a guy who chips away at problems. He’s fun to watch.
A campaign pledge two years ago was to rid the town of eyesores – empty buildings, burned out houses, abandoned cars, derelict gas stations. Good grief. It’s Farragut.
The old Ingles is refurbished and ready to lease; the gas station, the Kingsgate house and several vehicles here and there – all gone.
The biggest eyesore could become the town’s treasure if developers Budd Cullom and Jim Harrison (CHM Development) are successful in converting the old Kroger store into a spectacular town center. CHM has a site plan on tonight’s agenda (4/16) of the Farragut Municipal Planning Commission.
And Mayor Williams will be their biggest cheerleader.
The planning commission will meet at 7 p.m. via Zoom with a broadcast on the usual outlets.
Item 6 is a discussion of exterior building elevations and a typical street profile for the redevelopment of the old Kroger property, 11238 Kingston Pike. SITE Inc. will speak for CHM. (pages 25-35 of the agenda)
“They have hired world-class design architects (Fugleberg Koch, based in Winter Park, Florida),” said Williams. “They do development up and down the Carolina coast.”
The Farragut development will be at least 75 percent brick, per town specs. It will be walkable with angled parking on both sides of a tree-lined boulevard. The property extends from Kingston Pike south to S. Campbell Station Road, Williams said. Existing structures will be demolished and new construction will come up to Kingston Pike.
The land is currently owned by Jim and Mary Biddle; it is under option by CHM.
Mark Shipley, community development director, said today’s discussion is a chance to obtain early feedback on the design. The project envisioned would create a “main street” on the south side of Kingston Pike that lines up with the entrance to Farragut High School. Smaller businesses would lead to larger spaces, some with multiple stories, and ultimately to high-end apartments. Williams said the apartments are not part of the current design.