Thanks to Lauren Christ of Moxley Carmichael for writing this guest post for the Blue Streak — Cynthia Moxley.
The CDC is a nonprofit whose mission is to make East Tennessee a better place to live and work by bringing professional design and planning assistance to community groups and nonprofit organizations. The CDC offers its services through pro bono contributions of architects, landscape architects, planners and other professionals.
Mark your calendars for next year because this is a one-of-a-kind event that showcases the beauty, excitement and diversity of downtown living and commerce – whether you’re thinking about moving your home or business or you simply want to explore more of what our vibrant city center has to offer. Here’s a glimpse of the evening, including the spectacular views from the tour.
The Thursday evening started out with a reception and silent auction at the Knoxville Downtown Design Studio on Gay St. Refreshments were provided by downtown vendors Tupelo Honey, Bella Luna, Café 4, Magpies and Woodruff Brewing Company.
The self-guided tour through Market Square included several stops.
I started at 4 Market Square, an address you might recognize as Café 4 and the Square Room. Above the restaurant and event space, however, the third and fourth floors house the young men and women in the Knoxville Fellows Program.
Led by director Rick Kuhlman, the Knoxville Fellows program is a nine-month curriculum for recent college graduates who are participating in local internships and studying their Christian faith. It serves as a leadership development program.
Let’s see if you can guess from these photos who lives on the 3rd floor and who lives on the 4th floor.
It’s not too hard to figure out that the guys occupy the third-floor apartment along with a ping pong table and video games in a self-proclaimed man cave. The women Fellows live in the fourth-floor apartment and have decorated with a bit more of a feminine touch. Either way, you can’t beat the location.
The next stop was the home of Jim Hasler in the Steamboat Building at 7 Market Square. The Haslers are ranchers from Missouri, who fell in love with Knoxville about six years ago and decided to buy a condo downtown. They weren’t able to be in town for the tour, but Ghada Eid, wife of Faris Eid who designed the space and who became friends with the family, was on hand to show us around.
“What makes this place so unique is that it’s not a condo,” she said. “It really is a home.”
And, she’s right. It didn’t feel like a condo at all. It was a large, warm, inviting space.
The original balcony was pretty narrow, so the wall was pushed back to make the outdoor space larger – well worth the effort when you’re overlooking Market Square!
The back stairwell opens to the alley and features a small elevator. When the family has groceries, they just pull up to the back door and load the elevator.
My next stop was the home of Amanda Rankin & Philip Welker in the Bliss Home Building at 29 Market Square. The couple live here with their three-year-old son.
This home has a terrific view of the Bill Lyons Pavilion on Market Square and its many wonderful performances. While on the tour, the Knoxville Community Band starting playing.
Next, I headed across the square to the new apartments in the Orange Leaf Building at 36 Market Square. Designed by DIA Design Innovation Architects, these new luxury apartment units are available starting July 1.
There are one- and two-bedroom units available for rent. For more information, contact Ken Mills at 865-250-9145 or email@example.com.
Next, I visited the newly opened event venue, Market Square 211. To learn more, check out this article from Carly Harrington at the News Sentinel.
You access Market Square 211 from the staircase in the back of Oodles restaurant, but this unit is technically above Earth to Old City next door to Oodles.
This is a great space for an intimate event of about 50 people, whether in the condo space or on the rooftop patio. You can rent it for an event like a birthday party or rehearsal dinner, but you can also use it for overnight rentals. It has three bedrooms, two bathrooms and a full kitchen. Best of all, this space has a lot of character.
At this point, I ran out of time and didn’t make it back across Union Avenue to the Arnstein Building to visit the homes of Richard Allen Foster and Millie and Jerry Shelton. I really regret having missed those. (If you were on the tour, let us know what you thought!)
As always, there was too much to see downtown. And admittedly, I got distracted by this cutie as I was traversing the square.
If you’re considering downtown living, I hope this helped to whet your appetite. But if you’re not planning a move, there are also event spaces to rent, community concerts to listen to, fun activities to attend, and cute dogs to pet – to name just a few reasons why you should visit Market Square soon!
Next time you do, keep an eye out for these great buildings. Here’s what they look like when you’re passing by.