Transit-Oriented Development

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This report in the Transit Strategies Series explores transit-oriented development (TOD). TOD is land development located near transit stations or stops that includes a mixture of housing, office, retail and/or other amenities integrated into a walkable neighborhood. At its most basic, TOD is a mixed-use community that encourages people to live near transit services and reduces their dependence on driving. The most effective TODs are located less than a half-mile (or 10-minute) walk from a transit stop or station. Beyond just development near transit, TOD is development that strives to give people choices in how they travel, minimizing the impacts of traffic and creating a sense of community and place.

What do you think? What types of transit-oriented developments would you like to see? Where do you think transit-oriented developments could be used in the Nashville area?


  1. says

    Madison already is a transit town. We have BRT and we are walkable. We need transit oriented development. We have so much commercial land and opportunities here. Eight minutes to downtown Nashville at our closest border. Our own Ellington Parkway connecting downtown Madison to downtown Nashville, including all the highways.

  2. says

    Transit-oriented developments have to start with building a transit system first. Once the transit system is in place development will naturally follow. There was streetcar transit on West End years ago which drove development along that street until the tracks were removed thanks to GM’s promotion of buses.

  3. Val Knust says

    Wherever they are put, please be sure to provide ample parking for those using them. Why isn’t parking for the commuters part of all these conversations?

  4. ken says

    I feel that our current bus fleet should be gradually replaced with more efficient and less obtrusive “sightseer” style small busses. I rarely see a bus that is not empty or has more than a handful of riders. These overly large busses are a waste of money and contribute to traffic congestion.

  5. Virginia says

    New developments should certainly take into account the accessibility to public transit and other alternative ways of getting around town (i.e. bike lanes or greenways, ride shares, ride share parking). And yes, sidewalks make a huge and friendly difference. Very scary to walk down the side of a busy road.

  6. Jay says

    Great idea! We are overdeveloping areas and not thinking about the future which is how many cars are on the road. Developing an infrastructure that supports mass transit with the transit station being the core of the project makes sense on so many levels. Housing, shopping, work and transit all in one place is significant to development. Buses, trains, taxis, bikes and ridesharing can all use the same property effectively.

  7. katherine says

    SIDEWALKS sidewalks sidewalks
    I hear they are expensive but maybe we need some kind of amendment where anyone donating 5 feet of their front yard gets lower property taxes for a set number of years would encourage better right of way for sidewalks… and actually having a job that is specifically for getting sidewalks done.. AND GETTING RID of in leiu of fees for contractors and actually getting sidewalks in front of ALL new builds. They say they don’t do it b/c of city difficulties. GET the city organized to make it easier to put in sidewalks. Some say a sidewalk to nowhere is useless. I say: I use those sidewalks to no where and am glad when I suddenly have a good place to walk for part of the way. IE some is way better than none!!!!!!!

  8. Floyd Shechter says

    Davidson County needs Transit Oriented Development that includes a post secondary education component tied to the Tennessee Promise. A place where students live near public transit and college/jr. college and ride the nearby public transit to and from work which helps them pay for school. This is a good example:

  9. John says

    I believe the key is creating a plan that informs and gives confidence to developers about future transit routes. Currently, it is impossible to make these development decisions due to lack of clarity about the direction and the details surrounding Nashville’s transit system.

  10. Christine Watt says

    Sidewalks along Nolensville that support walking to stops and possibly small businesses where one could purchase a cup of coffee or paper for the ride to work would be welcome additions to the area south of OHB.

    • Melissa says

      One of the reasons Nolensville Rd has needed so many stops is the lack of sidewalk/pedestrian safety. It can be a dangerous place to catch the bus.

      The major outgoing stop before the three current Nolensville Rd routes divide up is at Walmart/Mcdonalds. Crowds pour out of the bus, and right into traffic to cross. It’s in the middle of a block. No sidewalks. No crossing strip.