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A rendering of the proposed reconstruction planned for Second Avenue. Image courtesy of the Callen family

A handsome brick building with a pedestrian mall connecting Second Avenue to First Avenue and the riverfront would replace the four buildings blown to pieces by the Christmas morning bombing, according to new renderings released Thursday.

Why it matters: The Callen family, which owns the properties, detailed their plans Thursday in a presentation to the city, quelling fears that the lots could sit vacant or be replaced with an out-of-place skyscraper.

  • The pedestrian mall, akin to the nearby Printer's Alley, would be a first-of-its-kind connector in the historic district.

What they're saying: Mayor John Cooper's administration has prioritized saving Second Avenue, Nashville’s first-ever historic district.

  • "The mayor expects a great product to arise out of the collaboration among city agencies, other stakeholders, and the owners of these four properties," Cooper spokesperson Andrea Fanta said.
  • Councilmember Freddie O'Connell, who represents the area, told Axios that the new renderings could restore the neighborhood's character while revitalizing sleepier parts of the entertainment district, such as First Avenue.
  • "In some ways it's as good an outcome as we could have secured," O'Connell said. "They have the potential to leave it better than they found it."

Go deeper

Nashville Zoo gets $15 million boost from mayor

Photo courtesy of the Nashville Zoo at Grassmere

Part of Nashville Mayor John Cooper's $568 million capital spending plan includes $15 million for a new parking garage at the Nashville Zoo at Grassmere.

  • Cooper tells Axios the city dollars will allow the nonprofit zoo to continue its rapid expansion.
  • The zoo plans to match Metro's money with $15 million in private donations, the mayor's office said. The zoo's fundraising campaign also seeks to pay for two new exhibits: an African Savannah and Village and an African Forest.

The startup that wants to disrupt big internet providers

Maura Losch/Axios

A new startup backed by funding from AOL founder Steve Case and Laurene Powell Jobs wants to break up broadband monopolies across the country.

Why it matters: Internet access has been crucial during the pandemic, but it's not ubiquitous, and it can be both slow and unaffordable in swaths of the country.

19 mins ago - World

Top general: China's hypersonic missile test "very close" to a "Sputnik moment"

Gen. Mark Milley. Photo: Rod Lamkey-Pool/Getty Images

Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, warned Wednesday that China's test of a hypersonic missile is "very concerning" and "very close" to the kind of "Sputnik moment" that triggered the Space Race during the Cold War.

Why it matters: The comments by America's top uniformed general underscore the depths of U.S. concerns about China's rapid military expansion and development of advanced weaponry.