NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — When it comes to the rebuilding of 2nd Avenue after the Christmas Day bombing, there really is no playbook. Various departments in the city have coordinated to come up with a plan to not only restore the historic stretch of Nashville but improve it as well. One initiative that aims to help reshape the area right down to the brick and mortar level is called 2ndAveStrong.
Brian Mansfield, who is with Historic Nashville, said saving everything we can is vital on 2nd. “It’s what really started Nashville. From the beginning, it was our tide of the commerce that we had from the river.”
Nashville is a city known for the honky tonks lining lower Broadway and the music that comes through their front doors, but the city was actually born in the buildings that line 2nd Avenue.
On the 100 block, it was known as Market Street and it was the economic engine for the entire region. “The beauty of this is that it is a historic district, that includes not just the fantastic nightlife and entertainment that visitors and locals have come to know. it’s also a neighborhood,” said Janet Kurtz with 2nd Ave Strong.
And at this point on 2nd, it is literally about saving the facade, but it ain’t cheap. “2ndAveStrong is a fund that was started in collaboration between the district and Metro Historic Commission Foundation to preserve the historic buildings of Second Avenue, as well as look to the future,” explained Kurtz.
There is no older stretch as historically and architecturally significant, and for a city consumed with new construction, it’s something worth saving.
“So we started as early as March with historic engineering surveys, and also working with different companies that came into the buildings that were most severely damaged,” added Kurtz.
The effort has come down quite literally to the brick. “And by hand they are picking up building materials, cataloging them, tagging them, and they are now in storage, waiting for the next phase,” said Kurtz.
And in that next phase, those cataloged bricks will be key to building a future, realizing sometimes the best way forward is certainly not the easiest path to take.
News 2 takes you inside the recovery of Nashville’s Historic Downtown area rocked by the bombing last Christmas. Catch special reports on 2nd Avenue Reborn all day Thursday in every newscast. And on WKRN.com.
“So there are certain processes that just take a little bit more time. But I think we do see progress. There’s been great progress with just the street itself. I walked it in early January and from what I saw to what I see today, it’s just, it’s already different. So it’s wonderful.”
2nd Ave strong continues its fundraising efforts with the goal of restoring the vitality of the district. The money goes directly to support the continued structural assessments and facade repairs that extend far beyond the four main damaged structures. Click here to learn more.