Our Work to Preserve Music Row Hits a High Note

May 6, 2016 by Erica Stewart

Tennessee State Review Board taking a walking tour of Music Row

photo by: Robbie Jones

The picture includes Patrick McIntyre, executive director of the Tennessee Historical Commission and members of the State Review Board taking a walking tour of Music Row after the meeting to review the MPDF for Music Row.

Great news! Our work to raise awareness of Music Row as hub of music history reached a new milestone!

On May 4th, the Tennessee Historical Commission’ s State Review Board unanimously approved our study of Music Row’s national historic significance and our National Register of Historic Places nomination for Music Row’s House of David Recording Studio. Both documents were prepared by the Trust’s National Treasure program manager, Carolyn Brackett and Robbie Jones of New South Associates, Inc.

Both Carolyn and co-researcher/co-author Robbie Jones, are featured in a television segment by Channel 5, the Nashville CBS affiliate.

The Music Row research document, called a Multiple Property Designation Form surveys Music Row history from 1895 to the present, examining the history of the 209-acre neighborhood and more than 300 properties located within. Our research identified 64 properties that could be historically significant enough to be eligible for individual listing on the National Register. The MPDF thus provides the essential groundwork for property owners to pursue listing their building on the National Register, a voluntary, honorary distinction that will help raise awareness of their national significance and make them eligible for historic tax credits for their rehabilitation.

It is important to note that National Register designation does not convey any restrictions or protections to the exterior or interior of the property, nor can it be bestowed upon a building without an owner’s consent. If a property owner desires actual protections for their building to ensure its historic integrity and market value in the future, they can seek landmark status from the Metro Nashville Historical Commission which does enact design guidelines.

The MPDF will next go to the National Park Service for approval, at which point the NPS will have 45 days to take action or request additional information.

Meanwhile our work will continue in earnest to develop recommendations for preservation, tourism and economic support of the music industry on Music Row. Stay tuned!

This May, our Preservation Month theme is “People Saving Places” to shine the spotlight on everyone doing the work of saving places—in big ways and small—and inspiring others to do the same!