Thompson Lane sees rebirth after storm

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Swanson Development's rebuilt 15,360-square-foot office building on North Thompson Lane. TMP/E. Edgemon
Much has changed in the year following the tornado that ravaged parts of Murfreesboro a year ago.

The year following has been a time of change for the industrial and commercial areas along Northwest Broad Street and North Thompson Lane.

The former Cummings Signs building and ITNOLAP (In the Name of Love and Peace) Pallet & Crating space near the corner of Northwest Broad Street and North Thompson Lane were completely demolished and cleared away due to the heavy damage the buildings endured.

Cummings Signs was closed prior to the Good Friday Tornado and ITNOLAP moved its operation to 1142 Haley Road after losing around $500,000 worth of machinery and equipment to the EF-4 tornado.

Swanson Development now hopes the 22-acre parcel will see a rebirth as a mixed-use community consisting of commercial and residential buildings, said Joe Swanson Jr., chief manager, Swanson Realty and Construction.

“That space is cleared off and available for development,” he said.

The property is for sale or available for lease as the Swanson companies have no current plans for the property.

“Given enough time we will come out with our own plans” if no one else comes forward, Swanson Jr. said.

Swanson Construction did rebuild its 15,360-square-foot brick office building located along North Thompson next door to Riverstone Saloon (formerly Stampede’s Dance Hall & Saloon).

All but the first floor of the two-story building was destroyed.

“We have built the core and shell,” said Michael Wrather, vice president of Swanson Construction. “We built it back the way we built it before. We are not building it out yet.”

Before the storm, the office building was halfway leased. Now no businesses call the building home.

Wrather said Swanson Construction is waiting until the building is leased or sold before they build out any office space.

“I think it is just a matter of time and that whole thing will be leased out,” Wrather said, adding that Swanson will sell the entire building or sell portions of it.

“I am a little surprised that we don’t already have it leased, but I get phone calls on it about everyday,” he said.

Wrather said the demolition of the industrial buildings on North Thompson Lane is going to breathe new life into that section of Murfreesboro where Broad Street is still a major thoroughfare.

“I am excited about what is going to go up there in the next three to five years,” he said.

In addition to the demolition of the industrial buildings, the former GE plant is going to be razed, said Holly Weber, vice president of economic development for the Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce.

Riverstone Saloon is another business that the tornado damaged, but the owner decided to upgrade the saloon during the rebuilding process.

The building received extensive water damage during the storm, said John Dye, manager of the saloon, in a previous interview. The windows were blown out as well as a portion of the roof and the air conditioners.

New flooring, bars, roof and air conditioning were installed and many improvements were made to the parking lot.

The Guidance Center at 2126 Thompson Lane experienced water and roof damage but reopened about four months after the storm.

Mayfield Floor Covering at 2134 N. Thompson Lane lost its building and inventory in the storm and relocated to 1818 NW Broad St. Owners Annette and John Mayfield were unable to be reached regarding their future plans for the store.

A building was rebuilt where Mayfield Floor Covering was located, but it is now occupied by Auto Color Supply.

Huddleston-Steele Engineering’s office building at 2115 NW Board St. literally caved in due to the impact of last year’s EF-4 tornado. Staff is currently moving back in to the newly rebuilt building.

Erin Edgemon can be reached at
Read more from:
Business, Good Friday Tornado
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Members Opinions:
April 12, 2010 at 4:55pm
Mayfields Floor Covering is definately still open and will be at the Broad St location until they find the best location for them. Their quality of work is still great and I always enjoy working with them!!!!
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