Fairmont Flats Development Underway at 3415 North Broadway

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

 

In writing about the 3415 North Broadway development, I’m venturing further afield than any posts in the past. I did write about the Broadway Development Plan about three-and-a-half years ago, but I’ve generally considered the intersection of Hall of Fame with Broadway to be the northern tip of what I cover. But then I got a chance to explore this particular property.

Those of you who have occasion to drive up and down North Broadway will probably know the property sitting Broadway directly across from the beautiful Fairmont Boulevard. It’s a stark white building with a gated courtyard on the front. The wall and the gates are solid, obscuring any view of what’s inside. It’s always made me curious. What’s behind those courtyard walls? Why are they there at all?

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Light Well, Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Developer Joe Fox of Fox and Fogarty offered to give me a tour and I decided to venture just a little north of my normal range, thinking that some of you are probably curious about this place, same as me. It has to be one of the most unique buildings I’ve ever toured. They are offering the units as condos for purchase starting at 217,000.

The history of the building is a bit sketchy, but Joe’s best information says it was built in the mid 1930s. He said it is a unique “art moderne” construction which is not typically found in Knoxville. An outgrowth of Art Deco, curved walls are a typical feature. He understands it functioned as a library at one time, but for the bulk of its history, it was an appliance store.

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

As for the mysterious courtyard, it’s unclear why it was closed in, but the enclosure wasn’t original. For the years the building was an appliance store, the courtyard was open and was simply a parking lot which happened to be enclosed on three sides by the U-shaped building, which features curved walls extending into the courtyard and curved windows on the front of the building.

The wall and gates were added, Joe thinks, within the last twenty years. The stamped concrete walls were fabricated by UT students. Current city codes will require a less opaque frontage to the property. The gates will be replaced, likely by iron gates, provided views in and out.

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Original Transom Doors, Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

The building was purchased over a decade ago by Jay McNabb with the intention of developing it as apartments. Two units were finished and leased. They were occupied with Joe approached Jay and asked if he would entertain selling the building to allow for its development. In the the end, Jay joined the development team, as he had valuable information about the building and offered value to the team.

There will be parking for residents, but it will not be in the front. The back has a parking lot which will soon be paved, providing a space to each resident and several guest spaces. The front will remain a courtyard, but it will be upgraded with a central walkway to the building and side walkways to the front units. A fire pit, a community grill and astroturf will be added to make the area both attractive and enjoyable for residents.

Some of the units on the back side are below grade and light has been provided, as well as a small patio, by adding light wells and placing sliding glass doors to the rear of the units. It’s one of the thoughtful touches added to the design by Sanders Pace Architecture. Other original touches will remain, including wood floors on the upper level and polished cement floors elsewhere. Interior windows, allowing more light into the homes will remain, as well as original transom doorways. Use of a historic preservation grant required maintaining historical touches throughout.

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Fairmont Flats, 3415 North Broadway, Knoxville, July 2020

Every unit will have an exterior space in the form of either a balcony or patio. Beyond that, each one is unique. Some have interior windows and others have curved exterior windows. Some have dedicated laundry rooms, while other have space for stackable units in the bathroom or, in one case, the bedroom closet. Each space dictated different layouts, but all emphasize living/entertaining space, with solid wood, soft close cabinetry and quartz counter tops.

The eight ground units are one bedroom, one bath, while the two upstairs units are three bedrooms and two baths. The size of each unit was dictated by the contours of the building and they vary accordingly. The smallest is 676 square feet and the one bedroom units, mostly in the 800+ square foot range, top out at 905 square feet. The larger two units are each over 1700 square feet.

The patios for each unit measure a spacious 16X6. All exterior glass will be replaced with high quality, custom Pella windows with to screen out exterior noise. The upstairs units will have French doors leading to their balconies. Some units have double vanities and others have multiple closets. Storage space has been emphasized.

One unusual feature included in the price of the condos is an option for a personalized mural by a local artist to be added to an interior wall of the home owner’s choice. The development team has partnered with Dogwood Arts to include the option for all units. High-end finishes throughout include black stainless appliances.

Two units are spoken for, but eight remain on the market. The first homes will be available this month and the others will be completed and available through the months of August and September. If you are interested in learning more about the available units, contact Carolina Coppinger by email at Fairmontflats@foxandfogarty.com or call (865) 280-0717 (cell phone) or (865) 588-3232 (office).

Comments

  1. Mary Jane Ritter says

    Thank you for expanding your coverage to the beautiful Emoriland – Fairmont area of town. This is an interesting and unique property that has piqued my curiosity ever since the walls went up hiding it from Broadway. I am delighted to see that it is being developed so nicely and will be an asset to the community.

  2. Susie cochran says

    I have fond memories of going to the library that was located in this building.

    • KnoxvilleUrbanGuy says

      Was it a branch of the public library?

      • William Walker says

        I often visited this building in my childhood (late 1940s and early 1950s). The North Knoxville Branch Library was in the left wing (when one faced the building), and a hair salon was also positioned in that wing. I often had my hair cut by W. E. Cox whose shop was in the main building. I have a photograph of the now-destroyed Broadway Theater which was across the alley on the downtown side. It also had an art-deco design. I am uncertain about the design of the remainder of the structure which housed Wininger’s Grocery Store during that time. Please continue to cover North Knoxville; it is as much of the city as the area south of the river, which you cover intensively. The library was a branch of the downtown library and I will forever be grateful for it, because it started me on a lifetime of reading and, later, writing. It was just as essential to my intellectual development as McCampbell Elementary School, which was just a few blocks away.

        • Agreed! But please don’t go West.

        • The owner of the beauty shop lived above her shop. I was friends with her daughter and we played in the back of her apt. I lived across the street in the Broadway Apts- -now condos? I remember the library and Mr. Cox’s barbershop. There was an appliance store at one time.

  3. William Walker says

    I often visited this building in my childhood (late 1940s and early 1950s). The North Knoxville Branch Library was in the left wing (when one faced the building), and a hair salon was also positioned in that wing. I often had my hair cut by W. E. Cox whose shop was in the main building. I have a photograph of the now-destroyed Broadway Theater which was across the alley on the downtown side. It also had an art-deco design. I am uncertain about the design of the remainder of the structure which housed Wininger’s Grocery Store during that time. Please continue to cover North Knoxville; it is as much of the city as the area south of the river, which you cover intensively.

    • KnoxvilleUrbanGuy says

      Thank you for the additional details! I have covered North Knoxville, a long way out Central and up Broadway to just south of the Kroger. I’m just one guy, though, and I cover about as much as I can. If you see a story just outside of that range and want to pitch it to me, I’ll consider it.

      • We appreciate everything you do. Your coverage is always well-done and we understand the effort you must put forth–as you said, you’re just one guy. One guy we all adore.

  4. Penny McMurry says

    I remember the library, they had a box of sepia slides near the door you could look at with a vintage viewfinder. (was not vintage at the time I guess) You could see the Grand Canyon, Paris and other wonderful places. I was amazed. And I do think it was a public library. Also, I’m guessing in the 70’s there was a piano store in the center space downstairs and a friend of mine worked there and also lived in an apartment over the store. I can’t remember the name of the store. Glad to see it is being restored into something beautiful.

  5. Peter Scheffler says

    Thanks for the article. When my wife and I moved to Knoxville in the 1970s we lived nearby and shopped for appliances there.

  6. Susan Hines says

    Sounds really nice. A bit expensive for the area, but a welcome addition.

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