August 03, 2015

Housing Plan Has ‘Twining’ in Collierville

By Kevin McKenzie
– Commercial Appeal –

A short walk from a new house to Collierville’s historic Town Square is an offer one developer believes home buyers won’t be able to resist, despite economic recession.

The eight-lot project envisioned by Boyle Investment Co., slated for the north side of Washington Street east of Mt. Pleasant, comes just as town planners are preparing to ramp up a new effort to map the future of downtown Collierville.

And though small, with 6,000-square-foot lots, the Boyle planned development is the largest residential project to cross the Collierville Planning Commission’s agenda since the economy plummeted late last year, said Jaime Groce, chief planner.

The name of the latest Boyle planned development, the Twinings of Collier, reflects its location next door to the Historic District and Town Square, said Doug Dickens, the Memphis developer’s vice president of special residential projects.

Webster’s definition of twining — the first syllable rhymes with twine — is interlacing or embracing, Dickens said.

The new development will embrace the architecture of the late 1800s or early 1900s, like the Town Square, and Boyle’s goal is to intertwine undeveloped areas around the square into a streetscape that will blend with the historic district, he said.

The "Collier" comes from Jesse R. Collier, the original developer who offered lots for sale in 1836 and provided the root for the town’s name.

The Twinings of Collier, which received outline plan approval from the town Planning Commission on Thursday, will be Boyle’s second infill development in Collierville’s downtown area.

Washington Gates Planned Development, with 16 lots in the same neighborhood, also plans to offer homes that will blend in and offer a short walk to the Town Square.

"This is a location that I feel like there are enough people who will want to be able to walk to this fabulous Square (even) in the worst of times," Dickens said.

Meanwhile, in a Board of Mayor and Aldermen work session set for 5:15 p.m. Monday before the regular board meeting at 6, Groce will discuss preparing a Downtown Collierville Small Area Plan.

Creative ways of collecting widespread public opinion will be a major part of the effort, because "we can’t have it be the planning department’s plan," said Jason Gambone, development director.