Models for Urban Innovation: An Update on oneC1TY-Nashville

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Written by Ryan Doyle

Since our groundbreaking at 31st and Charlotte Avenue roughly two and a half years ago, people of all backgrounds and interests, have asked me “What is oneC1TY?”

I’ve learned from the questions…answered those that I could and most importantly, I’ve absorbed the perspective of the people asking them. oneC1TY started as an idea influenced by the healthcare industry experiences throughout my career, my company Cambridge’s commitment to building communities more sustainably and mindfully, and an investment by our City to literally connect Nashville’s West Side like never before, with a bridge that is shared between pedestrians, bikes, automobiles and trees. Our goal was to define Global Thought, Local Impact and Personal Health in a way that only Nashville is capable.

Through our partnership with the Global Action Platform, we are in the front row as our City participates in the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities program, where work will be done to examine and implement strategies for sustainable economic, environmental and infrastructure growth throughout Middle Tennessee.

Locally, oneC1TY is integral to the work of Urban Land Institute’s Healthy Corridor strategies. Initiatives like this one and the Nashville Civic Design Center’s Shaping Healthy Communities will make an impact on the design and development of the dense, multi-modally connected corridors recommended through the Nashville Next process and plan.

8-c1ty-boulevard-the-first-building-at-onec1ty

And within these global and local examples, our 19 acres are planned to become the “public square” to a much broader and more diverse surrounding community, hosting the opportunity for technology to continue our healthcare industry’s evolution. While the business community positively disrupts their industry, oneC1TY will be a world-class case study for how the built environment positively impacts health. We believe we will make a lasting impact on personal well-being through the foundational ground floor experience that promotes connectedness with nature, walkability, fresh food, life-long learning and social gathering opportunities. Place-making qualities that we believe consumers measure, subconsciously or consciously, when exploring how and where to live life.

The initial step in implementing our vision is now complete. We’ve developed previously underutilized land in our City’s medical and university district into a connected, completely integrated site with sustainable water strategies, a network of complete streets, agnostic fiber optic capabilities and more than four acres of open space, all without relying on City funds. We’ve opened and fully leased our first commercial building to a diverse group of innovative organizations ranging from locally founded MediCopy, to multi-national Microsoft, to patient-centric Tennessee Orthopaedic Alliance, to the health technology coalition of the Center for Medical Interoperability. And to begin our food centric strategy we’ve partnered with James Beard award winner Gerard Craft on his restaurant Pastaria, and nationally acclaimed Scott Carey, who will bring the art of roasting and experiencing coffee to Sump Coffee.

To kick-off step two, we’ve begun construction on our first residential community within oneC1TY, providing space for more than 350 Nashvillians to find sustainable living, proximate to where they develop their intellect through work and study. We will soon break ground on our eco-conscious and active lifestyle focused hotel, which will offer travelers the chance to continue their healthy habits while joining our innovative business ecosystem or immersing themselves in local arts and culture in our neighborhood and throughout the City.

Finally in this phase, we will begin two more commercial office buildings, totaling more than 200,000 square feet and focused on housing technology and creative companies in workspaces that foster “a new way of thinking.” At the completion of these live, work and visit spaces, we will also have added approximately 50,000 square feet of inventive, locally sourced food and high-energy fitness.

In future phases, we will add three more buildings, including additional residential and office space, bringing our community program to 1 million square feet of office space, 600 dwellings, 170 hotel rooms and more than 100,000 square feet of ground floor retail. Over the duration of our development, we expect to see continued growth surrounding us on the West Side, connecting Midtown to North Nashville and the Central Business District to West Nashville’s historic neighborhoods. oneC1TY is not intended to be a neighborhood kept to itself, but rather a catalyst to lead the West Side towards principles that build a stronger community … economically, equitably, creatively, nutritiously.

So the answer to “What is oneC1TY?” isn’t always straightforward. oneC1TY has several interconnected parts, just like any strong neighborhood should. The answer is often different to different people, but after living with that original idea and beginning to implement our global, local and personal goals; it is ever more evident to me that oneC1TY is first about the people that make it. Their ideas, their ability to collaborate and connect, their enjoyment in the spaces they share, their daily journeys and accomplishments. I appreciate the individuals who currently make up the “we” in “we are oneC1TY” and look forward to those that join us and seek to learn from our themes in neighborhoods around the globe in the years to come.

 

Editor’s Note: The feature was originally published in the 2016 Global Action Report, produced by Diplomatic Courier for the Global Action Platform. To read the full report visit: http://www.mazdigital.com/webreader/42981. Republished here with permission.

 

About the Author: Ryan Doyle is Vice President of Cambridge Holdings, Inc., and General Manager of oneC1TY Nashville.