Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Knoxville Voice

Alright Downtowners, I have a question for you? Do you live in a renovated warehouse cum apartment? And if so, can you hear your neighbor's every word, groan, moan, bite, belch, etc?

I moved to the Emporium in May, and have slept with ear plugs more times than I care to remember. Till now I've just shut my yap, as I was told that that's just the way Dewhirst works his renovation magic, but recently I talked with a fellow tenant in my building who has decided to break his lease and make a run for it. Apparently, the paper thin walls got the best of him - that, or reality sunk in and he realized that he's paying a hefty sum for a sub-par quality of life.
For reasons similar to my neighbor, I've been planning on escaping to the JFG building, but realized that it too is a Dewhirst and will probably have the same nonexistant level of care paid to its wall insulation.

So Downtowners: what buildings are good, and which one's can you hear your neighbors playing Wii at 4 a.m.? Thus far I know the Emporium, Sterchi and Fire Street have a bad rap, What buildings do you recommend? Which one's suck? Concerned citizens need the info!

PS: My neighbor is listening to Coldplay for going on 3 hours. Just thought you'd like to know.  


blueeyedtawni said...

hehhe oh the joys of hearing everything. I live in a hotel converted to a apartment ..
Its like days of our lives . you can hear everything .Sometimes you cant help but crack up listening to the neighbors...

ck said...

two buildings i know of in downtown were crafted with loving care by an architect you may know: the candy factory and the holston. no noise issues there. alas, they are condos, not rental. what does this tell us?

rental=skimping on construction to pad the pockets of the landlord

good luck!

Anonymous said...

Let's be fair - that was the first big project Dewhirst did and one of the very first residential projects downtown. Every developer learned from mistakes that were made in early projects, so I'd be careful to judge all Dewhirst properties by the Emporium. Just be grateful the building got saved.

Robert said...

Very true.

In the grand scheme of things, I completely agree, and am still very hopeful for JFG.

B said...

...but i think it's a good thing to point out. if these buildings continue to be renovated poorly, people will steer clear of them, which worries me because it seems everything is turning into condos and apartments. the success of downtown really depends on if people start moving to these buildings, and more importnantly that they stay there. i want to see these buildings taken care of for years to come.

B said...

PS i heart david dewhirst. preservationist of the year from Knox Heritage!

stan said...

maybe i'm crazy but i never had too much of a problem in sterchi.

max said...

i wish someone would soundproof fort sanders, but maybe i just need to make more money and move out!

and at least they weren't listening to whitesnake or kanye west. i hear auto tuning really carries through walls.

seriously though. our friend jpr may be right. kinks have to be worked out. and huge kudos to the dew for bustin his ass to make downtown livable. now, the question is, can there be affordable living downtown at some point?

benjamin said...

robert, you gotta fight fire with fire. i say blast "strange overtones" from the new david byrne/brian eno album. listen HERE.

also, can this be an official request to include this song in the finetune playlist?

The Modern Gal said...

Coldplay? Fate worse than death in my opinion.

Robert said...

stan - i thought you said that yall could hear your neighbors gettin busy?

max said...

that's what he meant by "coldplay"

ck said...

big b's comment made me think. A lot of the rental stock in downtown is "first generation" i.e. built with the attitude "just be happy it isn't getting torn town." i think we're moving into a second generation of renovations aimed at a more sophisticated market with higher quality construction. this generation will retain people, whereas sterchi and the emporium will be "trainers" for introducing people to downtown living.

robert, the training wheels are off!

Robert said...

I feel so naked! Though, let's hope this new level isn't too much more expensive - it's pretty ridiculous the asking prices of condos and rents for downtown apts.

I have a feeling we'll see a drop in some of those inflated prices (I saw a unit in my bldg quoted at $100 less than what it was a month ago)

Tere said...

My son lived in a small apartment in the Old City that was great. It was down the alley between Java and the law office. I think there are either two or three back there. The apartment was awesome with lots of character, well maintained, not terribly expensive and even with all going on down in the Old City, not too bad on the noise. Check in the law office for info.

Robert said...

Update: The Cherokee Bldg on Church St. (Dewhirst) has very thick walls. A friend of mine lives there, and says sound is not an issue.

So it looks like Dewhirst is learning from previous efforts.

B said...

I lied: David Dewhirst won the "Spirit of Kristopher" award from Knox Heritage (as in Kristopher Kendrick)

So, anyways, he's still great.

Tony said...

At the Serchi, noise isn't a huge problem, at least it hasn't been for me. Heating/cooling, on the other hand, took me a while to figure out. I recently winterized my one-bedroom by putting film insulation on the windows and switching to space heaters. Waiting for my first KUB bill after the switch to see if it's a money-saver.

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