If you have visited downtown Murfreesboro recently, you are probably aware of the changes that are taking place. Organizations such as Main Street Murfreesboro and Downtown Murfreesboro Business Association are working hard to enhance and promote the historic downtown and economic vitality of the region. We are pleased to be a part of that effort, and our recent work at 527 North Maple Street is just another Rutherford County commercial project we have completed.
Built in 1978 and originally housing Bell South, 527 North Maple Street required extensive interior and exterior renovations. The building is located in the heart of downtown Murfreesboro, an area that has experienced extensive revitalization in recent years, including a new $55 million judicial building, $7 million parking garage, reconfigured streets and revamped downtown commercial space.
We've been involved with this rejuvenation, having completed the recent renovation of another downtown building — 310 West Main along with the tenant build-out projects for Franklin Synergy Bank and McCarter | East Law firm.
Completed in the Winter of 2018, 527 North Maple presented its fair share of challenges. Due to the building’s age and condition, our team completed several rounds of due diligence and designs to ensure the project was structurally and financially feasible. “The building was originally designed for purposes other than retail or office, so we had to completely change the structure to accommodate the type of use for this property. Quite a few structural modifications were necessary,” notes Joey Rhyne, Vice President and Partner at Dow Smith Company.
New windows and doors were installed, requiring 60 linear feet to be cut to allow room for new headers. With 6,000 square feet of rentable office space, this project called for immense coordination with the architectural and structural engineering teams. “We are fortunate to have partnered with Justin Lowe, AIA at Centric Architecture in Nashville,” says Rhyne. “Their expertise helped us transform a 30+ year old building into a new, exciting property just a couple of blocks away from the new judicial building.
Rhyne was instrumental in guiding the building’s owner, Roger Hopkins—a long-time Murfreesboro citizen who has a passion for development—and his owner's representative, Ewing Smith, through the complicated renovation process.
“I like to take old things and make them look new again. 527 North Maple is a prime example of urban redevelopment of an old, unused existing structure in the downtown core that was adaptable to prime office space near the new judicial building. Dow Smith Company came highly recommended to me and they surpassed my expectations at every turn,” notes Hopkins.
From securing building permits and completing feasibility studies, Rhyne’s communication skills ensured the project remained on schedule. Additional supervision skills by Estimator/Project Manager Dana Mitchell kept the jobsite safe, productive and on schedule.
“Because this was a design-build project, we had the benefit of being involved with the owner and the architect from the beginning of the project. This streamlined the process and allowed us to work with Mr. Hopkins and Centric to address quite a few design challenges early on,” adds Rhyne.
“I found Dow Smith Company was easy to work with, collaborative, and an excellent team member. Joey Rhyne was particularly really good about setting realistic expectations up front, making sure the client knew how every decision was going to affect the budget and schedule, and then proceeded to deliver a quality project within those parameters, says Justin Lowe, AIA.
“From their early-stage coordination of the architects, engineers, and city planners, to the performance and supervision of contractors of every specialty, Joey Rhyne delivered a beautiful, high-quality project on time and on budget,” says Hopkins. “527 North Maple will have relevance to downtown Murfreesboro for many, many decades to come. At the end of the project, my message to Joey and his team was personal: the opportunity to work with you has been my good fortune, and one that I will never forget.”
What was once a rundown building at 527 North Maple is now a vibrant downtown office and retail space. The Dow Smith team is proud to be involved with Murfreesboro’s revitalization and wants to thank Mr. Hopkins for placing his trust in us to get the job done.