Since the 1950s, Murfreesboro has had business and government leaders who have stayed aware of what needs to be done as far as economic development to be a vibrant community, while also listening to what the community wants to keep the quality of life that makes Murfreesboro and Rutherford County a great place to live. They have obviously been doing something right, as Murfreesboro was ranked as the number one “Boom Town” in the United States in 2021 according to Smart Asset.
In the last 10 years, Murfreesboro has grown by 30% according to the most recent census data. Aware that growth hasn’t really slowed down in the last 30 years, Murfreesboro leaders know more is coming and are aiming to keep it planned. Part of the plans for this growth comes from studies done a few years ago about what to do with development in the downtown area, but they have also made a point of staying on top of elements as diverse as healthcare requirements, shopping, and sports and entertainment facilities as Murfreesboro continues to be a regional hub for these three elements.
Here are six developments that will hit the ground in 2022 and have a big impact on Murfreesboro in the near future:
One East College
While talk about this $75 million, one city block-sized development on the corner of East College and Church Street has been in the news for several years, in 2021 the old buildings, except for the church, were razed to the ground. In 2022, work will begin on the mixed-use development that will include apartments, condominiums, retail, office space and a parking garage. The old First United Methodist Church building, which was built in the 1800s, will be worked into the plan, either as a restaurant or an event venue. With more people choosing to live downtown, this development is planned to provide more amenities like those offered in Nashville to those working and living downtown. Completion of the project is forecast for late 2023.
One Stop County Clerk and Driver’s License Renewal Location
As anyone who has gone to get their driver’s license renewed knows, there are too many people for the amount of space available in the current building. That is why a new building is to be constructed in 2022 adjacent to Fire Station 11 and across the street from Blackman Elementary School, off of Blaze Drive and Fortress Boulevard. Part of the building will be given over to the County Clerk’s Office with dedicated teller lanes, 3,900 square feet will be used for people getting their driver’s license renewed, and the rest of the building is scheduled to house future county offices. The Express Driver’s License Center will also process dealer tags, which is hoped to take pressure off the current Samsonite Boulevard site. A Linebaugh Library branch may also be built on the property. With all the growth in the Blackman area, it will be a welcome relief.
Ascension Saint Thomas Rutherford – Westlawn
Even with the new floor added to the Saint Thomas Rutherford Hospital on Medical Center Parkway, growth is filling the now 416 beds. For that reason, 2022 will see the building of a new neighborhood hospital near Veteran’s Parkway and Shores Road. The 32,000-square foot, two-story building will provide eight private inpatient medical beds, eight emergency treatment rooms, laboratory services, imaging modalities, outpatient services, and telemedicine. There will also be medical practice offices onsite. It is the first neighborhood hospital in Tennessee.
Vanderbilt Rutherford Hospital
Although initially denied by the state, Vanderbilt was approved in December to build off of Veteran’s Parkway at I-840 a 42-bed, $144-million hospital. It will provide services that current residents in the county have to drive to Nashville to receive. The new hospital will be a full-service community hospital with emergency services, obstetrics, surgical capabilities and cardiac catheterization services, and it will bring additional ICU capacity to the community. More than 52,000 Rutherford County residents traveled in 2020 to Nashville to be treated at the main facility on the Vanderbilt University campus. In the last three years, Vanderbilt has seen a 20% increase in visits from Rutherford County residents. They already offer extensive children’s services in Rutherford County through Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt in two locations in Murfreesboro. Vanderbilt representatives see this new hospital as an extension of the services they already provide in the area.
Legacy Sports USA Complex
With a groundbreaking tentatively planned for summer 2022, Legacy Sports is planning to build a $350-million athletic complex on a 260-acre site off Northwest Broad Street on farmland purchased from the Hord and Haymore families. The park will feature a 6,000-seat arena, an amphitheater for concerts and events, a fitness and wellness center, and a multi-use space for sports and recreation include baseball, basketball, cheerleading, dance, e-sports, football, futsal, gymnastics, hockey, lacrosse, obstacle course training, pickleball, soccer, softball, and volleyball. Youth camps will be offered. Also onsite will be retail and dining options. It is expected to be completed in 2024.
Concrete and Construction Management Building on Middle Tennessee State University Campus
When Dr. Heather Brown came to MTSU 20 years ago, her goal was to help build the best program available in concrete industry management. Now the desire is to make the new 54,000 square foot, $40.1 million Concrete and Construction Management Building to be the place where industry comes to learn and to gain graduates as employees who are ready to work day one. The new facility will provide classrooms, faculty and staff offices, and laboratory space for Concrete Industry Management — one of the most exclusive programs in the nation — and Construction Management. At the ground breaking MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee said, “We mark yet another milestone in the university’s strategic path to educate and prepare students to fulfill workplace demands. Our undergraduate and graduate programs in Concrete and Construction Management position this institution as the go-to educational resource for students seeking to become leaders in these fields…Our programs have become the model other colleges and universities seek to replicate…” The building is expected to be completed Fall 2022.
More development, especially around downtown, is sure to follow with the changes soon to be made for Town Creek and at the intersection of South Church and Broad Streets. Town Creek will be daylighted and given a park-like setting. This project, along with a new traffic flow on Broad Street, is hoped to spur further interest in the Bottoms near Cannonsburgh.
These new developments will create economic growth, while also providing much needed services, facilities, educational opportunities in fast growing fields, and capabilities for the community.