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All Roads Lead to Growth in Rutherford County, TN

Dirt is being moved in just about every corner of Rutherford County – and that’s the sign of not only new development, but also a bright future.

By Kim Madlom on June 22, 2022

Artist’s rendering of Alta Depot in Smyrna
Geheber Lewis

Dirt is being moved in just about every corner of Rutherford County – and that’s the sign of not only new development, but also a bright future. Roads are being constructed and expanded, restoration projects are underway and new residential and commercial structures are in the works.

This fast-increasing population of more than 341,000 checks in as the fifth-largest county in Tennessee, and its growth isn’t slowing. In fact, all four of the area’s major cities are working hard to meet the region’s demands as well as attract residents and businesses now and well into the future.

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Kline Swinney Associates

Murfreesboro

In Murfreesboro, a $271 million road improvement project spans the city, with construction occurring on Brinkley Road, Cherry Lane, Gateway Boulevard, Jones Boulevard, New Salem, Thompson Lane and more. Other signs of growth include a new Costco expected to increase interest in the west side of the city, an expansion of the city’s infrastructure, and the transformation of the former First United Methodist Church building into a downtown mixed-use development.

“Murfreesboro’s growth is fueled by its excellent schools and family-oriented lifestyle.”

Craig Tindall, City of Murfreesboro

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Kline Swinney Associates
Artist’s rendering of One East College in Murfreesboro

“Murfreesboro’s growth is fueled by its excellent schools and family-oriented lifestyle,” says Murfreesboro City Manager Craig Tindall. “To keep pace with its growth, the city is investing in enhanced municipal services to ensure the community remains as strong as ever. Development within the city’s historic downtown area is very strong.”

An example, Tindall says, is One East College, a $75 million redevelopment project just off the City Square with new residential, office, retail and entertainment venues.

“Similar projects are in the planning stages, and Legacy Sports USA has announced plans for a 200-acre sports and entertainment development with athletic facilities serving – as well as bringing – millions of visitors to Murfreesboro and Rutherford County each year,” Tindall says.

Smyrna

In Smyrna, Alta Depot Apartments, a multibuilding residential project, and the newly opened Zama Park, a pocket park that honors Smyrna’s relationship with its sister city in Japan, mark a revival of the Historic Depot District, while sidewalk and crosswalk improvements are planned throughout the city.

“We have a lot of great projects underway,” says Smyrna Town Manager Brian D. Hercules.

“From a livability standpoint, putting green space and living pace in the downtown area is great for our community.”

Other Smyrna projects include an expansion of the airport, including a runway extension; a new industrial park off Almaville Road; and a $61 million project to widen Jefferson Pike (State Route 266) from two to four travel lanes from Nissan Drive to Interstate 840. The state is also widening Sam Ridley Parkway from four to six lanes from I-24 to Old Nashville Highway.

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Jeff Adkins
The terminal and business center at the Smyrna Airport

“As we attract a variety and diversity of new residents into our community, we’re creating good jobs with good opportunities.”

Brian D. Hercules, Town of Smyrna

Hercules says the gateway into Smyrna from I-840 is significant.

“This is an excellent connector from an economic standpoint,” he says. “It will bring an influx of traffic to our businesses and industries, and this 4-mile road will develop with commercial and residential growth.”

More importantly, Hercules says, is the improved safety it will provide. “This is a two-lane, no-shoulder road with a lot of traffic. It is very unsafe. This new four-lane road will make it safe as people come into our community.”

Hercules says Smyrna is on a trajectory for more growth over the next decade.

“As we attract a variety and diversity of new residents into our community, we’re creating good jobs with good opportunities,” he says. “Commercial and industrial growth is matching population growth, and income levels are rising. That allows us to build more parks and improve the walkability of our neighborhoods.”

Eagleville & La Vergne

A downtown revitalization is also underway in Eagleville, including sidewalk improvements along Main Street, pedestrian signals, landscaping and lighting. In La Vergne, Arbor Ridge, a mixed-use development, will bring a new grocery store and more than 500 modern homes to the west side of the city. Hamlet at Carothers Crossing and Hamlet South are two higher-end neighborhood developments in the works, and the city is expected to land Tennessee’s first BJ’s Wholesale Club, with a plan to construct a 108,000-square-foot building on Industrial Road.

BJ’s is a membership-only warehouse club chain similar to Costco and Sam’s, and La Vergne economic development officials have been in talks with the Massachusetts-based company since 2018.

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