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March 25, 2010
 

Master Plan: Real Estate Assessment Report

The  Clarksville Strategic Master Plan Real Estate Assessment Committee has submitted the following assessment to the city for review and debate. Clarksville is currently accumulating data and input from individuals, business representatives and civic leaders prior to creating a new development plan for the city.

Real Estate Assessment Report

Overview:

The Real Estate analysis for the City of Clarksville Master Plan will be an integral piece in identifying the demographic trends and projections that will be used to gauge the investment climate for growth and development by private individuals within the real estate market.  Additionally, a general inventory and analysis of the real estate market for residential, commercial and industrial properties will be included.

A detailed analysis of the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) was completed by committee members to better understand the assets to play upon, the areas of concern and the areas for potential development.

The SWOT analysis in relation to the real estate market and the City of Clarksville as this committee sees it follows:

Strengths

  • Interstate, Rail and Waterway
  • Airport  – marginal
  • Downtown Area
  • Industrial Base
  • Austin Peay State University
  • Ft. Campbell young retirees

Weaknesses

  • 100 Square Miles  –  Too spread out
  • Lack of exit access  at Hospital site
  • No barge point services
  • Status of airport terminal today
  • No metropolitan government or limited consolidated

Opportunities

  • Waterway development
  • Airport improvements
  • Further exit development
  • Veterans Administration Assisted Living Home
  • Industrial development
  • Convention center/entertainment venue

Threats

  • Increased land costs
  • Traffic
  • Funding of all projects listed as opportunities
  • Interest rates

Demographics and housing analysis:

Initial analysis of the market reveals that the population grew by 22% between 2000 and 2010 and is estimated to expand to over 155,000 by the year 2020.  A majority of this population will be in the 35-54 age range with median incomes hovering in the $50,000 range.

Average price range of the homes sold in Clarksville is $100,000 – $200,000.  This pricing represents the cost of construction less the land costs for the properties.

It is important to note that with the average age of our community is in the 35-54 year old range.  We will soon be experiencing an aging population that follows the national trends for baby boomers.  This population may soon be deciding on new housing options as they “downsize”, become “empty nesters”, and look at long term care options.  As we continue to review our housing options in the community we must be cognizant of the aging population and ensure that adequate thought is in place to accommodate this demographic base.

Clarksville has continued to enjoy the benefits of a strong development market with a heavy emphasis on retail.
The employment of our workforce in the retail sector is far greater than any other sector in our area including manufacturing, education and health care.

We have strong development in the commercial and traditional residential areas of our community.  The market seems to be holding steady in multi-family housing growth.  As the community looks toward answering the needs of an aging population and for a resource to broaden our property tax base, multi-family housing options can play a significant role.  Commercial and multi-family properties pay a much higher property tax assessment than single family residential properties.

Idea #1

Redevelopment of the Kraft Street Corridor

Austin Peay State University has recently celebrated reaching the 10,000 student milestone.  Austin Peay certainly will continue to develop its student population and in turn will need commercial and residential options in close proximity to the university that will support the students and the faculty.

The Kraft Street corridor today is primarily derived of small businesses, light industrial companies and aging housing options.  A proposal from the Real Estate committee would be to review the zoning, development options and the available existing properties on the Red River side of the corridor to determine opportunities for a mixed use housing environment to support the university and other growth in the area.

Mixed use options for development could include commercial/office space in the frontage or lower levels of the properties with single family housing in the $100,000 – $150,000 price range.  An additional influx of multi-family housing that is geared toward student housing would also do well in this area with a close proximity to the commercial establishments in the mixed-use development.

The areas of opportunity and concern are varied and are outlined below:

  1. Transportation and Traffic Considerations: A concern in this category would be with the proximity to the university and downtown.  A need to ensure adequate bus routes and access to the campus.  In the APSU Parking and Transit Review dated January 2010 (www.apsu.edu) , providing on campus parking for commuter students is costly and APSU is limited in the number of areas that can be reserved for this type of parking.  Bringing the “commuter” students closer to campus with alternatives to housing and making available the new “Peay Pick Up” bus service would help alleviate the traffic flow into campus and could support the university in its growth plan.
  2. Infrastructure Issues: Infrastructure issues are always a concern in most areas of the community.  An interesting perspective on this area would be that it is currently supporting a primarily commercial and light industrial base today.  A detailed analysis on peak demands on all utilities with a projection on the needs if this demand shifted to more residential and small commercial use would be suggested.
  3. Economic Development Opportunities (Public and/or Private): Economic Development opportunities would more than likely be derived from retail, restaurant and small office growth.  As most of these new businesses would hire from the general demographic that attends the university, we could potentially see an opportunity to have someone live, work and educate themselves in an area that encompasses little or no need to have access to a vehicle or to put a strain on our roads system.  Additionally, there could be opportunities to encourage the small industrial clients in the area to move to a less congested, more accessible to rail and interstate area within the community.  Analysis is suggested on the economic benefits that could be derived economically from this sort of relocation of resources.
  4. Public Safety, Emergency Response and Disaster Contingencies: Again an area of consistent concern, however, this area remains in the heart of our city and current operations are in place.  Projections on the potential for the university expansion should be reviewed to ensure that we are planning to support the growth in the area with additional city police, campus police and city fire department staff.
  5. Environmental and Ecological Considerations and Potential Impacts: A remote concern would be if any of the light industrial clients in the area would have created a brown field environment.  It is suggested that an environmental impact  analysis be reviewed.
  6. Energy Considerations and Strategies: APSU is currently exploring areas for energy generation from both wind and solar resources.  This proposed development might be an excellent opportunity to incorporate energy efficient building materials and design along with possible alternative energy sources such as solar to further the research at the university.
  7. Quality of Life Considerations: The biggest consideration here would be if the development came to fruition, it could provide opportunities for both students and faculty to live in close proximity to the university, enjoying the benefits of having commercial establishments that provide their needs near their home and place of work/study.  It is close enough to downtown to allow for access to those businesses as well.  Additionally, it could provide other choices in retail and restaurants for those who work in downtown or reside in the area today or for those who regularly attend sporting events, concerts and lectures at the university.

Suggested Time Line

0 – 3 Years – Begin zoning changes
4 – 10 Years – Commercial and multi-family developments begin

Idea #2

Development of a new East/West Corridor

As our community continues to grow primarily in the northern part of the area we see continued growth and development on the existing East/West access roads such as Tiny Town and the 101st Parkway.  It is suggested that a new East/West Corridor that is currently under review be considered a priority for the area.  Additionally, it is suggested that as plans to develop this corridor evolve, other options for housing, schools and commercial establishments be considered in advance.

The benefits of “advance planning” on the zoning, development suggestions and resource allocation for this corridor will have long term effects on how the area grows and how we as a community support this growth.  This corridor would align closely with the new HSC plant and would pose a benefit to provide suitable housing to support the employees in that area.  Additionally, any commercial establishments would see the support of business from not only the HSC and surrounding industrial business but also that of Ft. Campbell residents and employees as the final leg would connect to that area as well.

A strong suggestion of this committee would be to consider developing options for  off campus housing to include single family in the $100,000 – $150,000 price range, up-scale multi-family housing.  An attractive use of the land resources would be to focus this area on cluster housing with smaller lots and more dense population.

It is suggested that the Clarksville-Montgomery County School System should look toward working with developers to plan “neighborhood” schools that are located within the developments, with sidewalks and access to the schools thus alleviating the need for bus transit.  These schools should border the single family and multi-family housing options for optimal resource use.

Commercial establishments could include the types of establishments frequented by young families.  Theaters, restaurants, retail outlets and service industries.  Demographically this area could attract mid size families with the average age of the adults in the 25-30 age range, if the employees of Ft. Campbell and HSC gravitate to living here.

The areas of opportunity and concern are varied and are outlined below:

  1. Transportation and Traffic Considerations: Traffic considerations will only really pose an issue if enough advance planning is not done.  These issues will revolve around ingress/egress from corridor businesses, access to schools and parks, etc.
  2. Infrastructure Issues: Infrastructure again will be manageable if advance planning is done.  The anticipation of growth in the area should encourage the utilities to estimate current needs against the projections and plan accordingly to upgrade their systems to accommodate the growth.
  3. Economic Development Opportunities (Public and/or Private): The potential to provide suitable housing in an attractive price range in close proximity to the military base and the largest industrial property could lend support in the recruitment of additional manufacturing, service or back office operations to the industrial park, expansion site or surrounding areas.   Additional jobs in the area will be in the supporting commercial establishments and office environments.  These establishments will additionally increase the sales tax base and property tax benefits for the area.
  4. Public Safety, Emergency Response and Disaster Contingencies: Another area that will need focus as planning is outlined for this area.  Current staffing for the fastest growing portion of our community is adequate but response time could be affected if planning is not in place for additional police precincts and fire stations.
  5. Environmental and Ecological Considerations and Potential Impacts: Currently the concern here would be useable land that there seems to be abundant of.  Most is agricultural and some assessment would need to be done on the impact of the farmers in that area and on their operations.
  6. Energy Considerations and Strategies: Tying this particular area back to the infrastructure issues would include reviewing opportunities for more energy efficient school designs.  Ensuring that the schools are located where a majority of the students can walk to school reduces the dependency on buses and fuel needs. An option would be cluster housing to maximize land use with the potential for energy efficient homes, LED street lighting  and a multitude of new technologies for use today.  A particularly interesting plan would be a mid-priced single family neighborhood with energy efficient homes powered primarily by solar energy.  An outcome of this type of development could cluster many of the HSC employees in the same neighborhood offering opportunities for ride sharing and in turn reducing the strain on our roads, dependency on fuel and other benefits.
  7. Quality of Life Considerations: With the suggestion of a cluster type design of neighborhoods, this would provide for the potential for parks, walking trails, sidewalks and many other amenities for residents to enjoy.  Schools would be located within the neighborhoods to further provide a connection to the children and their extracurricular activities with little or no need to drive to the facility.  If proper planning is done and the correct type of recruitment for businesses is in place this will further enhance the quality of life for area residents making businesses they frequent accessible.

Suggested Time Line
0 – 3 Years – Secure funding for holding property right of way
0 – 3 Years – Set zoning parameters
4 – 10 Years – Design development/construction

Idea #3

Development of current farming property on Tiny Town Road

It is apparent that the Tiny Town Road corridor will continue to be a strong development area for our community.  There is limited usable land that can be developed to the benefit of the citizens that reside and/or work in the general Tiny Town Road area and it is imperative that we maximize the benefits of this available land.

A suggestion of this committee is that developers work with the Regional Planning Commission, the Clarksville-Montgomery County School system and other entities to ensure that future developments in this area will provide housing acceptable to the demographic base gravitating to this area.  A combination of single family and multi-family housing is desired.  For single family a cluster type of development with smaller lots, green space for parks and recreation would enhance the livability for the residents.

Positioning an elementary school in the heart of the development would present benefits for easy access and alleviate the dependency on bus transit for the students.  This school could also, with the proper planning, provide the parks that would benefit the entire development.

The areas of opportunity and concern are varied and are outlined below:

  1. Transportation and Traffic Considerations: The Tiny Town Road traffic considerations should be a part of the advance planning for this area.  Ingress/Egress from the area businesses can be an issue if the proper zoning is not in place to ensure the right access on the frontage.  Transportation issues could be minimized with imbedding the schools within the neighborhoods.
  2. Infrastructure Issues: Infrastructure is certainly an area that needs close review.  Many of the utilities are currently under a strain in this area and will need access to funding capital to upgrade these facilities or to add more facilities to the area.  Analysis on the potential development lots with a cluster designed area will be important in determining the infrastructure needs.
  3. Economic Development Opportunities (Public and/or Private): Most opportunities for economic development in this area will be in retail, restaurant and service businesses.  All of these types of opportunities add to the tax base for both property and sales tax as well as provide jobs in our highest employment sector.
  4. Public Safety, Emergency Response and Disaster Contingencies: A review of the potential land and its use for residential development will help to determine whether current staffing for police and fire protection will be sufficient to support an additional influx of residents and businesses.
  5. Environmental and Ecological Considerations and Potential Impacts: Currently the land under review is primarily agricultural and would present no immediate issues for concern on the environmental and ecological fronts. Parks at the schools and in the neighborhoods would help protect green area and present a more appealing development to live in.
  6. Energy Considerations and Strategies: Tying this particular area back to the infrastructure issues would include reviewing opportunities for more energy efficient school designs.  Ensuring that the schools are located where a majority of the students can walk to school reduces the dependency on buses and fuel needs. An option would be cluster housing to maximize land use with the potential for energy efficient homes, LED street lighting and a multitude of new technologies for use today.
  7. Quality of Life Considerations: With the suggestion of a cluster type design of neighborhoods, this would provide for the potential for parks, walking trails, sidewalks and many other amenities for residents to enjoy.  Schools would be located within the neighborhoods to further provide a connection to the children and their extracurricular activities with little or no need to drive to the facility.

If proper planning is done and the correct type of recruitment for businesses is in place this will further enhance the quality of life for area residents making businesses they frequent accessible.

Suggested Time Line
0 – 3 Years – Set zoning parameters

Support Resources

Support resources for this report include input from the commercial and residential experts in the area.  Additionally, resources such as the Regional Planning Commission staff, Clarksville Economic Development Council website, Austin Peay State University website and reports from the resources provided by the City of Clarksville were all used to create the above analysis.

Committee Members and their professional affiliations:

  • Christy Batts –  Telecommunications Division Manager, CDE Lightband
  • Mark Grant – Developer and Contractor, Mark Grant Construction
  • Gene Washer – Retired, publisher, The Leaf Chronicle
  • Carol Clark – President’s office, Austin Peay State University
  • Lamar Clift – Realtor, Keller Williams Real Estate
  • Nick Steward – Realtor, Keller Williams Real Estate
  • Floyd Bradley – Realtor, Keller Williams Real Estate

Other Contributors

  • Gary Norris – Contractor and Construction Consultant
  • Richard Swift – Commercial realtor, NAI Clarksville
  • Michael Dean – Commercial realtor, KW Commercial
  • John Davidson – Commercial realtor, KW Commercial
  • Elaina Johnson – Developer



About the Author

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