Excitement Ahead Of Draper Tower Implosion In Downtown

Posted: 5:33 PM, Jan 05, 2018
Updated: 2018-01-06 01:40:25Z

From residents to employees in downtown, there is plenty of excitement ahead of the long awaited implosion project of the Draper Tower in downtown. 

On Saturday at 9:30 a.m., the 20-story building is scheduled to be imploded as the latest project to transform the former LifeWay campus into a mixed-use redevelopment.

Less than 24 hours before the implosion, several people were standing around road block signs to soak in the tower before it vanishes from the downtown skyline. 

Many cannot recall a demolition project this big in recent years.

"Hopefully it'll fall in on itself and not outwards. To see a building come down I think is way better than a yearly fireworks show," Paul Hooghkirk, who works nearby, told NewsChannel 5 after taking pictures of the building. 

It will take 600 explosives detonating in the span of less than ten seconds to bring down the tower. 

Steve Pettigrew of Demolition Dynamics, who was also behind the Georgia Dome implosion, is in charge of the project. 

NewsChannel 5 talked to a couple driving around to find the perfect spot to take pictures of the implosion. 

"This is unique especially since it's in downtown and on the edge of downtown," said Attorney Charles Robert Bone.

Bone represents real estate investment company Southwest Value Partner,  based out of San Diego, after it purchased the property for $125 million in November 2015. 

Nashville Yards is the development that will take over the 15-acre property. It is expected to bring in offices, a hotel, retail and green space, and an entertainment district. 

"You can truly have a neighborhood in an area that's livable, walkable, and where you can play and work at the same time. It gives them and the city the opportunity to re-imagine the gateway of downtown as you come off the interstate," added Bone. "Nashville has an authenticity to it that a lot of cities don't have so we try to be careful with this project to strike that right balance."

Aside from the implosion, there will also be a groundbreaking for a 23-story Hyatt Regency hotel at 10th and Broadway. 

There are no designated public viewing spots, according to police.

To learn more about road closures, click on this link