Mt. Juliet will soon have a new retail center with a "Gatlinburg-like" façade chock full of restaurants, boutiques, gourmet grocery, fitness facility and even a "high end" indoor car showroom.
That plus much more, said owner, developer and contractor Scott Lumley. He gave local business owners a sneak peek at the 41,000-square-foot center that is in full construction. The building is on North Mt. Juliet Road and is the former John Deal building.
The project, The City Center, is a total rehab of the former building.
Already on board for the center are Smoke Fusion restaurant, that will have an indoor patio area; Energy Lighting Group; Crossfit Mt. Juliet (already open); a fresh meat and cheese gourmet grocery and a woman's boutique. These are in what Lumley calls a "mini-mall setting."
Lumley said he's working "very closely with Dunkin Donuts" to join the center, but hasn't closed that deal yet. He told tour goers he has plans to include some type of high-end car dealership with an indoor showroom, by "appointment only."
"Now, wouldn't that be amazing here in Mt. Juliet?"
Lumley said the project was a large "jigsaw puzzle" and "not easy to do," but will be "incredible." It's already 60-percent leased, and he said in the last few weeks he's had at least 30 calls from interested business people.
"We want to keep it more retail," Lumley said. "But there will be some office space as well. We are being very careful and want to make the best decisions for a cohesive, upscale retail center. It's about giving north Mt. Juliet a unique feel."
During the tour, Lumley explained since he was a small business owner, he wanted to "incubate" small business. There will be a variety of spaces available, ranging from 500 to 1,000 square feet.
And because of the size of the building, Lumley said it was important to have varied brick colors in segments on the façade to give the building definition, scale and a Gatlinburg-type of look. Another unique feature will be "covered" parking for about 60 cars, with a total of 166 parking spaces.
"I thought it would be great for people to be able to park under cover during inclement weather," Lumley said.
Construction is in full swing, and Lumley said he the center will be fully leased and open by January.
Those interested in leasing space may call (800) 403-1021.
Mt. Juliet townhome proposal heads to planning leaders
An initial plan for townhomes in Mt. Juliet will go before the Mt. Juliet Planning Commission Sept. 17.
The plan proposes 24-30 town homes on a 7.36-acre track, according to developer Lumley.
The property was originally purchased for parking for The City Center under construction on North Mt. Juliet Road.
Lumley said there are four "buildable" acres on the property for the townhomes and 3-plus acres will be green space.
"We don't have anything like this in the heart of Mt. Juliet," Lumley said. "It's in the middle of town. I want a walkability type environment. It will be close to the commuter train."
Lumley said if the project is approved it will be a "small stepping stone" to revitalizing North Mt. Juliet. His The Center Project, however, he said was a large stepping stone.
"The proposed 26 townhomes would be accessed only from Old Mt. Juliet Road South. Old Mt. Juliet Road South, in turn, feeds directly to Old Lebanon Dirt Road," said Mt. Juliet Planning Director Bo Logan.
The "green area" not buildable on the condo project land is on the banks of Cedar Creek. Lumley said perhaps it could be turned into a public park, perhaps with a pedestrian bridge that links to The City Center.
Writer Laurie Everett may be contacted at email@example.com.