For Immediate Release January 31, 2013
COMMUNITY & GOVERNMENT RELATIONS
225 West Center Street v Kingsport, TN 37660 v 423-229-9413 v 423-229-9350 fax
Downtown Kingsport continues to see phenomenal growth in property value
KINGSPORT – Between 2011 and 2012, Downtown Kingsport continued to see phenomenal growth in taxable property value, jumping by $22.7 million during the period according to Sullivan County public tax records. This represents the prior year's investment rolling onto the tax rolls.
An additional $4.7 million in non-taxable public investment and $3.8 million in taxable private investment was tallied in city building permits during calendar year 2012. The largest public and private projects surrounded the Clinchfield corridor (Press Building, Food City shops, Burger King). The same holds true for public/semi-public projects with the Kingsport City Schools Administrative Office at $3.3 million and Chamber of Commerce at $1.6 million.
The one year increase in downtown property values was 20 percent compared to 7 percent in the MeadowView area. The Stone Drive commercial district saw a slight decrease due to turnovers in the many car dealerships in the area, although that number should improve going forward with recent developments in that area.
Since 2000, total downtown property values have nearly doubled, increasing by $64.5 million.
"We work very hard to promote all parts of the city equally, using incentives and redevelopment investments sparingly," said Jeff Fleming, Assistant City Manager for Development. "However, downtown is the DNA of any community. It's what makes Kingsport fundamentally unique."
Fleming serves as city staff liaison to the Downtown Kingsport Association and Model City Coalition.
"Just as the global economy is changing, Kingsport is experiencing a transformation, too," Fleming said. "Kingsport Press site went from nearly 1,000,000 square feet of heavily-industrialized book manufacturing to a major downtown retail center including a grocery, Farmer's market, and restaurants, professional and medical offices."
In addition, the Board of Mayor and Aldermen, invested more than $20 million in the Academic Village, bringing accessible educational opportunities as well as potential customers to downtown merchants. And, a new parking garage built next to City Hall has helped alleviate chronic parking shortages.
The information is gathered annually in compliance with Kingsport's designation as an official Main Street Community (www.TennesseeMainStreet.org) by the Tennessee Department of Economic & Community Development. Tennessee's program is an affiliate of the National Main Street program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation (www.preservationnation.org/main-street)
"Our partnership with the City helps us tell our downtown success story," said Sherri Mosley, interim director of the Downtown Kingsport Association. "By participating in the Main Street program, it helps us understand how we compare with like-minded communities across the state and nation.
"In 2013, look for us to redouble our efforts to land new destination magnets like restaurants, increase events, and focus on strengthening our core," Mosley added.