Is the character of Broadway changing for better or worse?

Posted at 6:19 PM, Aug 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-26 19:26:12-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Broadway is one of Nashville’s most popular streets, with the stretch between 1st Avenue and 5th Avenue hosting tourists and locals alike for music and entertainment in the Honky Tonks and bars.

“I just moved here in June, so this is my new home, and I’m loving every minute of it,” Frankie James, a singer who recently moved to Nashville, said. “The energy, the music, so many talented music artists here everyday at every bar, it’s amazing. Love Broadway.”

But Broadway’s character is changing, some say for the better, some say for the worst.

Those who believe Broadway is changing for the worst attribute the amount of tourists, how drunk people get, and the crime as reasons for why they think Broadway is going in the wrong direction.

In the past 3 months, within 1,000 feet of 3rd and Broadway, there were nearly 550 citations and arrests. The majority were theft, followed by assaults, then drugs and alcohol issues.

While that’s a high number, even more incidents happen downtown that aren’t reported or caught, meaning the crimes and the amount of overly-drunk people are higher than what’s reported in police numbers.

The issue has gotten so obvious that social media has taken notice.

Instagram page Broadway Uncensored posts videos of people on Broadway who are too drunk, passing out, fighting each other, or partaking in illegal activities.

The Instagram account has nearly 30,000 followers who like and comment on the posts, with many seeing this as the new normal on Broadway.

Others believe it’s the exception and not the rule, with Broadway still providing great music and fun activities, whether alcohol is involved or not.

“Most people keep it under control, I mean, most people are here to have a good time,” Stephanie Swenson of Mount Juliet said.

“Some people can’t handle their alcohol, and that’s just people in itself, but overall, this place is great,” James said.

Police did announce that they were increasing their presence downtown to help curb crime and keep tourists and locals alike safe.