Proposal: Music Row should be 'cultural industry district'

Friday, May 13, 2016, Vol. 40, No. 20

NASHVILLE (AP) - Nashville's Music Row should be designated a "cultural industry district," giving local property owners more options to protect the area's heritage, the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the local Music Industry Coalition say.

The recommendation is one of several expected to be released Monday along with a report, detailing options that Metro government and the state could pursue to help keep music businesses thriving on Music Row, The Tennessean reported ( Those suggestions included job tax credits, sales tax exemptions and parking and infrastructure incentives.

"The intent behind putting forth these recommendations is to help give neighborhood property owners and other stakeholders who care about the future of Music Row some additional tools that could protect the value of their investments, while ensuring that Nashville's unique creative culture con tinues to thrive and grow," MIC president Mike Kopp said.

Music Row has already been named a national treasure by the National Trust.

The designation would allow those businesses to come together to create a nonprofit organization called Music Row Investment Trust. The organization could then pursue preservation tools including low-interest loans to purchase and rehabilitate historic buildings.

"We believe designation of the Music Row cultural industry district is essential to build new programs and policies that honor Music Row's historical legacy, recognize the music industry's impact on Nashville's economy and help to plan for its future," said David Brown, chief preservation officer and executive vice president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

Last year, a report found 200 active music businesses and 66 properties worthy of preservation on Music Row.

Preservationists have already moved forward on adding the House of David reco rding studio and publishing house to the National Register of Historic Places.