NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A new report shows the local footprint of businesses in downtown Nashville.

The Second Quarter Market Conditions Report from the Nashville Downtown Partnership breaks down the retail and restaurant operators. It shows 77% of them are locally based, 11% are national, and 12% are regional.

“We have a really strong local base downtown,” said Crissy Cassetty, NDP Director of Economic Development. “We not only have operators that have lived downtown their whole life, but we have big restaurant owners who have decided Nashville is their next place to open their restaurant and have actually moved their entire operations and their family here because Nashville is such a great place to live. So we love seeing that.”

Cassetty explained they’ve doubled the amount of retailers that came downtown from the first quarter of this year to the second and there are 31 new retailers and restaurants in the pipeline to open before the end of 2022. She added that, of course, the tourist population has grown, but downtown’s employee and residential population has increased as well.

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“Our residential growth has grown at a steady rate of 10% every year,” said Cassetty. “We are growing our retail and restaurants. And, we’re getting really, really good operators into those spaces, which is fantastic. You know, the pandemic didn’t slow down development in downtown Nashville.”

Their report of residential spaces downtown for the second quarter of this year shows 3,492 spaces are under construction, occupancy is at 95%, and more than 10,000 residential spaces are planned.

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“Nashville is a community that has always loved to invest in itself. And so having the number of local businesses downtown is so important and it’s so important for not only our growing visitor population, which is strong and definitely growing, but it’s important for our Nashville locals to come downtown and support those businesses,” said Cassetty.

The second quarter report showed that not only do people want to visit Downtown Nashville, but they want to live and work there as well. Office vacancy has gone down from the first quarter to the second quarter of this year. Nashville’s is at 10% with a total office inventory of 17.8 million square feet. That’s while Charlotte and Tampa are at 13%, Indianapolis is at 19% and Austin is at 21% for office vacancy.

“Downtown is a great story for Nashville and for Middle Tennessee,” said Cassetty, adding that people often forget 25% of all sales tax in Davidson County is collected downtown. “Downtown Nashville makes up less than a half of a percent of Davidson County. So downtown really pays for itself. And it pays for a lot of other things, too.”

Note: Story edited on 8/31/22 to correct original quote from Crissy Cassetty where she stated that half of all Davidson County sales tax was collected downtown. The correct number is 25%.