‘This is a long time in the making’: Kingsport leaders excited about proposed residential community

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KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) — Plans are in the works for a new neighborhood with a slew of amenities near downtown Kingsport, but it won’t be complete for quite some time.

Engineering plans are being finalized for a proposed 39-acre residential community near the heart of the city after the Kingsport Economic Development Board officially selected Edens Investments as the developer of the project.

Kingsport City Manager Chris McCartt told News Channel 11 that the idea for the project has been about a decade in the making.

“We started talking about what kind of magnet projects do we need to draw people into our downtown. From there we started looking at what our options were,” he said.

McCartt explained that the goal was not just to focus on the redevelopment of downtown proper, but to also utilize the adjacent land.

“With the development of Brickyard Park and then ultimately Miracle Field, we really began to see how this land had a real opportunity to be that magnet,” he said.

The “magnet” for new residents and businesses for the city.

“Positive redevelopment that not only brings in new businesses but also provides foot traffic and fuel for the existing businesses and I think that’s what we have created here,” McCartt said.

The goal, he explained, is to create something never before seen in the Tri-Cities.

“You have this green space that will allow us to host festivals allow us to do things that now may even require us to shut down streets which we recognize is difficult for businesses. And so it really has a lot of positives that are coming with this,” McCartt said.

The city expects an early spring groundbreaking, with the project cost estimated at “well over” $60 million, and an annual tax benefit of approximately $1 million for both Kingsport and Sullivan County.

The city is currently in contract negotiations with Edens Investments, according to John Rose, economic development director for the City of Kingsport.

“They bring a lot of things to the table for the residents of that development with well over 300 homes. They’re going to provide dog parks over a mile walking path. Expanded sidewalks exceed the city standards greenspace and landscaping that exceed city standards, a community center for citizens, a swimming pool, and the list goes on,” Rose said.

Rose estimated that the roughly 350-unit development could increase the city population by 800-1,000 people.

There is a residential neighborhood to the east of the development, he explained, particularly the Riverview community. However, the surrounding land is industry or owned by the city.

“Not only is this project unique in what it’s providing the community, it’s unique in that it will not disrupt any current road system. It’s in the heart of the city. It’s an old industrial site that did not allow through traffic. So part of this development will be adding the ability to come through the development be into downtown quicker, but it won’t disrupt anything because there’s no current road system that goes through this development,” Rose said.

The project is estimated to take roughly six years to complete.

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