Mixed-use development would replace East Nashville housing complex

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — A major development proposed for a South Inglewood neighborhood would mean the demolition of nearly 200 apartments.

The Porter Hill development at the corner of Cahal Avenue and Porter Road would bring hundreds of new housing options, mixed with retail and restaurants, but it would also mean the Section 8 units at Berkshire Place Apartments would be demolished.

“What they have envisioned is a four-story mixed-use retail, restaurants, walkability. We are looking at how they could improve south Inglewood park eventually,” District 7 Council Member Emily Benedict told News 2.

She says the project must first be approved by Housing and Urban Development. The owner’s plan is to transfer the HUD contract to Birchstone Village, a complex in Madison they plan to build, which will allow low-income housing vouchers. Benedict says they are also working with the developers to offer some affordable housing units within the future Inglewood development so some residents won’t have to move. 

“South Inglewood has been gentrified quite a bit and so this is more of that,” stated Benedict. 

Porter Hill would offer a variety of housing with more than 700 units from stacked flats to townhomes.

Benedict says so far the feedback has been positive from the current residents.

“There were concerns, as there should be,” Benedict said. “Their lives are going to be disrupted they are going to have to move at some point so, but beyond that, they really thought the development that the developer is going to build in Madison that is going to be lower-income is going to be higher quality than what they are in today.”

Amanda Latifi, who lives close to the area, said she feels the proposed plan would enhance the sense of community as it includes restaurants, retail, an amphitheater and a grocery store. 

“I think it’s important to have anchors to kind of keep people in the community, it’s a great way to meet and be amongst your neighbors instead of having to go to other neighborhoods so I’m really for something that brings the community together. This playground is a great addition, I’d love another grocery store that I could walk to,” said Latifi. 

Benedict says she wants to make sure everyone has input on the project.

“I represent my constituents here — that’s everybody from the 119 kids that live at Berkshire Place today that are enrolled at MNPS to everybody that just moved here in the past five years. It’s really about what the community wants and based on what they want,” Benedict said. “If they want this additional gentrification, then I will help to get that passed for them. If they have concerns about it then we will address those and see what can be done.”

Wednesday night, the South Inglewood Neighborhood Association hosted its second meeting this week about the project, and Benedict says there will be many more in the future.

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