A recent piece in Realtor Mag shouted out the desirability (and resale benefits) of homes situated in walkable neighborhoods — “56 percent of millennials and 46 percent of baby boomers say they prefer walkable communities that mix housing, local businesses, and public services,” the story says.
We’ve seen that play out plenty, even here in not-always-so-walkable Nashville, particularly in recent years.
Sure, our city is set up for more of a dependence on driving than, say, Chicago or Seattle (or New York, obviously), but there are pockets all around Nashville that’ll let you park for days. If you’re a new transplant, you just need to know where to focus to find your “walker’s paradise.”
Here are a few of the places we’d turn your attention to, with some properties on the market now.
The most walkable places to live in Nashville:
East Nashville has walkable pockets throughout, with restaurants and shops that pop up in clusters from Main Street, toward downtown, to Riverside Village up in Inglewood. But getting close to the central hub of Five Points, in the Lockeland Springs neighborhood, gives you the best chance of ditching your car for longer stretches. Coffee shops, restaurants, bars, shopping, all within a stroll. You can even walk to one of the best natural grocers in the city, the Turnip Truck — it’s kind of a long walk, but a doable one.
The cute historic home above (built in 1924) is blocks from Five Points, and if you’re crazy about bygone-era details, the trim, doors and windows alone’ll grab you.
Density tends to contribute to walkability, and Historic Germantown — a busy mix of historic properties and new homes/condo buildings — has become the standard-bearer for bigger-city density in Nashville. It’s also become one of the city’s hottest culinary hotspots, with restaurants that are praised well outside Davidson County limits, including City House and Rolf & Daughters.
The upscale new builds at Gramercy Germantown, pictured above, are a good indication of the neighborhood’s trajectory — almost-Brownstone-style developments cropping up regularly, with design nods to the area’s historic personality. Roof decks are big, which is a great bonus, since the downtown views from Germantown are fantastic. With this particular property, you’re right in the mix of things, a quick walk for groceries, dinner, shopping — the great Nashville Farmers Market too.
Go back a dozen years, and The Gulch wasn’t anything close to a Nashville destination. Now, it’s absolutely buzzing, night and day, and although it’s a small nook, a lot’s been packed in there — mostly vertically. Tons of upscale condos, with restaurants and shops below. The second Turnip Truck location is in The Gulch too, which means your grocery shopping’s handled. And if you’re a country/bluegrass music lover, there’s also a rare and wonderful holdout from the past in the cozy Station Inn, right amid all the shiny and new.
If you’re looking at The Gulch for a new home, you’re looking at a condo, and most of the buildings there are stocked with amenities and modern flair. The Terrazzo, above, fits right in, with contemporary design, tall ceilings, a rooftop pool, fitness center and lots more.
Maybe Downtown seems like it goes without saying, but it wasn’t that long ago that living Downtown just… wasn’t a thing. As we’ve grown, so has the housing there, from new condos to renovated historic buildings. The benefits of being Downtown are many, especially if you’re drawn to nightlife — you’re just a stroll from The Ryman, the Bridgestone Arena, the Ascend Amphitheater, lower Broadway and tons more. There’s some room to grow when it comes to everyday needs, but once the Whole Foods gets there, your car will be that much less essential.
If you’re drawn to history, the Bennie Dillon building, built in 1927, is your coolest Downtown bet. The condo unit above has some nice details if you like loft vibes too — exposed brick, exposed ductwork. Added bonus for the car you’re trying not to use: hugely valuable assigned parking space, included.
Another part of town that’d be unrecognizable to folks who haven’t been to Nashville in 15 years, 12 South is now one of our busiest walkable pockets of businesses, with excellent restaurants and some of our favorite shopping stops, from fashion to musical instruments. It’s a solid choice if you want walkability but don’t like condos/attached homes — here, you’ll find larger single-family homes with a little bit of yard, from historic properties to brand new builds.
This renovated historic home above (built in 1945) has lots of space for a large, walkability-focused family — 5 bedrooms, 3 1/2 baths and more than 2700 square feet, with a patio and a cute fenced yard. And it’s just blocks from the concentration of 12 South stuff.
Those are just a few of the parts of town that’ll keep your feet on the ground in Nashville. Is walkability a big thing for your house hunt? Call/email and tell us about what you’re looking for — we’d love to help!