A proposed Chattanooga Red Wolves stadium project that includes surrounding development cleared a hurdle Monday, when an East Ridge panel recommended a zoning change.
USL League One‘s Red Wolves are planning a new stadium that will anchor a larger mixed-use development on about 100 acres at Interstate 75 and Interstate 24. The estimated $125 million plan is led by Red Wolves and Utah-based Star Community Builders owner Bob Martino, and calls for a 5,550-seat stadium to highlight a project that includes 400 apartment and condominium units, 375 hotel rooms, 475,000 square feet of commercial space including the stadium, and a mix of walking and nature trails.
On Monday, an East Ridge planning panel issued its unanimous recommendation to rezone 61 acres to accommodate the project. Residents expressed concerns about issues such as traffic and noise, as well as the potential for flooding at the site, but the panel’s recommendation does not finalize the zoning change. The recommendation instead sends the proposal to the East Ridge City Council, which will make the final decision. More from the Chattanooga Times Free Press:
Despite hearing concerns about potential flooding, traffic, noise and other issues from nearly a dozen people, the East Ridge Planning Commission agreed to pass the proposed $125 million project onto the city council later this month.
“Water and traffic are concerns. I share those concerns,” said panel member Casey Tuggle to about 75 people at the meeting. But, he said, the proposal to rezone the vacant property at Interstate 75 and Interstate 24 from residential to commercial is a matter of whether “the land is suitable for which it was intended.”
Ron Renegar, another panel member who offered the motion for the zoning change, said the proposal still must go to the city council for approval twice this month — June 13 and June 27.
But Sandra Kurtz, chairwoman of the South Chickamauga Creek Greenway Alliance, said people in the area with whom her group spoke were wondering “what is the rush?”
The Red Wolves, who have opened a merchandise store and office near the project’s site, have been hoping to launch work on stadium this summer. The club began competing this spring as part of Division III USL League One’s inaugural season, and are currently playing home matches at Chattanooga Christian School’s David Stanton Field.
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