Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Featured Neighborhood: Ooltewah

Welcome to Ooltewah!
Copyright © mitchgroff Creative Commons. 
Ooltewah, like much of the Chattanooga metropolitan area, has come a long way from humble beginnings. Around the same age as Chattanooga, Ooltewah's presiding county went bankrupt early in the last century, forcing Hamilton County to absorb it. Since then, it's been an important part of the Chattanooga community. Considered locally as more than a neighborhood, but less than a separate city, Ooltewah has been a favorite of families for over 20 years. It offers plenty of new construction and land for sale which have made it great for families looking for room to expand, as well as retirees who want a custom living space after the family home clears out. The architectural styles tend to be modern and open, with popular features like great rooms, spacious garages, and multi-story foyers. Ooltewah also boasts excellent schools, with active sports teams and high rankings, adding even more appeal for those with kids. Nooga.com reports the acceptance of a multimillion dollar bid been to build a new Ooltewah elementary school to accommodate the growing student body, which is sure to be the first of many upcoming expansions.

Signage on the history of Ooltewah
Copyright © Jimmy Wayne Creative Commons. 
Ooltewah has become even more popular than it was a decade ago because of its proximity to the new Volkswagen plant and Amazon distribution center, which have helped Chattanooga weather the recession in much better shape than the rest of the country. When you add in the shopping and restaurants centered around nearby Hamilton Place Mall in East Brainerd and the short  30 minute commute to downtown Chattanooga, it's no wonder that Ootltewah just keeps growing, even amidst the housing crisis and though economic times. With economic recovery, there should be no stopping this bustling suburb.

The Volkswagon Passat, one of the cars manufactured in Chattanooga
Copyright ©  Kay One 73 
Creative Commons. 
The township is trying to approach current and future growth wisely, and avoid the pitfalls of rapid development done without long-term planning. According to Nooga.com, investors with the Lupton Company are trying to develop Ooltewah to have even more to offer centered around its own downtown area. The article explains that "leaders of The Lupton Company see the new development as 'an emerging gateway to the City of Chattanooga,' and they are hoping that well-established business owners can help recreate the close-knit feeling of downtown in Ooltewah. 'Much the way the aquarium spurred growth from the Tennessee River’s banks, we envision Cambridge Square anchoring, activating and further energizing the I-75 corridor,' Belitz said." 

Businesses are definitely taking an interest, with town franchise favorite Lupi's Pizza planning a new location in Ooltewah. When Publix grocers moved into Chattanooga, they selected Ooltewah as one of two locations in Chattanooga, serving not only Ooltewah and parts of Chattanooga, but also Cleveland, TN. Ultimately, Ooltewah is a great community, whether you want to live where you work, raise a family, or stretch your retirement budget to include more home and greater proximity to fun, shopping, and travel hubs.