NashvilleNext is a plan for the city’s future—a plan that will include ideas about the art and culture, economic development, education, environment, transportation, diversity, livable communities, public safety and more—pulled together from the input of people who care about Nashville, whether they are residents, business owners, commuting workers, or city leaders. The plan for NashvilleNext is due in the spring of 2015 and will outline Nashville’s growth into the year 2040.
Spearheading this plan is Metro Planning Director Rick Bernhardt, who is determined to keep the public involved throughout the entire planning process. It is imperative that the members of the community understand and have a hand in planning the future of the city, so that the NashvilleNext plan will reflect public opinion, rather than just the agendas of current leaders. The first opportunity for community involvement will be this Saturday, February 16th at 10 AM in the Nashville Public Library.
One of the hurdles that will need to be addressed in the NashvilleNext plan is the changing demographics of the young “millennial” generation. These “millienials” value the city in which they are living above the type of work they are doing. For this reason, they tend to aggregate in urban areas, rather than communting from suburbia. Meanwhile, members of the baby boomer generation are expected to stay active and retire to smaller homes rather than assisted living centers.
Based on these changes, it is projected that 75% of households will be different than the families for whom the traditional building and zoning was established. Bernhardt has used to term “retrofitting suburbia” to describe the changes that we will need to see in order to accommodate the future of Nashville.
With a growth of over a million new residents expected by 2040, NashvilleNext has the potential to lead our city into a successful future as one of the most prominent places in the South.