Two anonymous industrial facilities plan to build factories across the river from Cason Trailhead greenway, a section of town previously full of urban forest that is rapidly giving way to development.
One of those companies is an unnamed aerospace manufacturer that wants to relocate from out of state and build a factory in the neighborhood, which is off the New Salem Highway and Interstate 24 junction, City Manager Craig Tindall said. Warrior Drive and Beasie Road would have to be extended for the developments at a cost of about $5 million. Tindall said he could not provide additional details about the company.
The aerospace manufacturer received a favorable rezoning recommendation on Aug. 7 from the Murfreesboro Planning Commission, and the City Council will consider the zoning at a future date. The company wants to rezone 14.55 acres from L-I (light industrial) to the city’s new general industrial zone, G-I, a type of medium industrial. Charles B. Mitchell Jr. is the rezoning applicant.
Both the current and the proposed industrial zones go against the Murfreesboro 2035 Comprehensive Plan, which calls for “Urban Commercial/Mixed Use,” or multi-family residential, entertainment, restaurants, hotels and other uses.
A City Council resolution from a meeting last Wednesday reveals the aerospace manufacturer is being referred to by the code name “Project Armadillo,” which plans to “construct a metal fabrication and machining facility.”
The resolution also refers to a second planned manufacturer in the same area, “Project Ribbon,” that plans to “construct an industrial services and distribution facility.”
Both sites are in an area that is rapidly developing with such users as a RaceTrac gas station and an indoor shooting range. Just on the other side of the West Fork of the Stones River, Blue Sky Construction is proposing to build 677 homes along the river and the Cason Trail Greenway Trailhead, a prospect that has alarmed many neighbors over traffic, the loss of trees, impact on wildlife and the impact on the greenway.
As for the two industrial users, the Council held its weekly combination business meeting/workshop Wednesday at the Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce to discuss an access road.
The council approved the resolution, which calls for the city to ask the Tennessee Department of Transportation for funding to help build an access road to the sites under the Industrial Highway Act of 1959. The state would pay for two 12-foot-wide travel lanes with 4-foot-wide gravel shoulders.
During council discussion, it was revealed that the city would have to find extra funding to build curbs, gutters and sidewalks to meet city road standards. City records show $2 million would come from the state, with the remainder coming from the city’s 2020 capital improvement program (CIP).