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Old 10-22-2015, 04:13 PM
 
Location: Johnson City, TN
667 posts, read 821,493 times
Reputation: 449

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Quote:
Second Costco prefers larger areas and areas with higher income, we are a bit too rural and spread out for their market stats. Also we just don't have the income levels that Costco likes either, they cater to a higher income bracket than what we have around here. I really doubt we'll ever get any high end retail here we don't have the demand nor income in the area to support it.
As I said in an earlier thread, our income levels are in the ballpark of Greeneville/Spartanburg but I will concede that this area is smaller and less dense.

I disagree that this area can't support high-end retail but I guess it depends on the definition of "high-end" Of course there will never be places like Nordstrom or Nieman-Marcus but the past few years have seen places like Earth Fare, The Fresh Market, Monkees, DSW, Chico's, and White House Black Market (soon) open in the area and these places could at least be considered catering to upper middle-class shoppers. If not the entire area, Washington County's numbers continue to improve in regards to population and income.
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Old 10-22-2015, 08:34 PM
 
Location: Kingsport
182 posts, read 213,857 times
Reputation: 144
If it goes like many other deals the real deciding factor will be how much incentive Washington County is willing to pay. A sweet enough incentives deal could trump local demographics and metrics. Speaking of demographics the 2014 ACS release compared to 2008 ACS shows the share of households in the $75,000 to $99,999 in Kingsport Bristol increased 2.7% and 1% in Johnson City MSA. $100,000-$149,999 increased 1.4% in Kingsport-Bristol and 0.6% in Johnson City MSA $150,000 - $199,999 up 0.6% in Kingsport Bristol and 0.6% in JC MSA. the share of $200,000 and above grew 0.2% in Kingsport-Bristol and decreased by 0.3% in Johnson City. That represents some pretty solid growth for the region as a whole in the share of middle-class households. Of course the largest share in both MSAs is the $35,000-$49,999 (14.9% in JC in 2014 - 15.1$ in Kingsport-Bristol )and $50,000-$74,999 (19% in JC MSA and 16.9% in Kingsport-Bristol)
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Old 10-22-2015, 09:39 PM
 
Location: Tennessee
28,286 posts, read 21,213,936 times
Reputation: 34696
I don't see how we don't have the income levels, population, etc, to support a Costco.

I shopped at Sam's frequently in the Tri-Cities. I found it adequate, but I do like my local Costco better. I think Costco does sell a higher quality product.

Costco is often more reasonably priced on similar items (though I've only been to local Sam's twice with my parents here in Indy). The selection is usually better and more varied. Costco does seem to sell better products, but Sam's is competitive on some items.

I think Costco is superior overall and that it would be a wonderful addition to the Tri-Cities retail scene. I think it would do great business and would provide a much needed option from the Walmart/Food City/Sam's domination locally.
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Old 11-04-2015, 07:24 PM
 
Location: Johnson City, TN
667 posts, read 821,493 times
Reputation: 449
Johnson City Press: City takes first step toward $8 million donation to arts center

Looks like ETSU's performing arts center is a go for 1,300 seats thanks to a significant investment from Johnson City. This will put the center just over the capacity of the Niswonger Performing Arts Center in Greenville. I imagine the ETSU center will get similar artists and shows although maybe not as many due to ETSU being the primary user. I wonder if this facility will affect the viability of NPAC in Greeneville?

Johnson City Press: ETSU arts center expected to be boon for local economy

This article goes into more detail about the anticipated economic impact of the center. It looks to provide a substantial windfall for the city and the region but perhaps more importantly, amenities such as this are key to attracting high-paying corporate jobs and companies who value quality of life in a community. The Sierra Nevada example is perfect.

It's time for this area to look beyond the low-handing fruit of low skill/low pay manufacturing and invest in the resources necessary to attract corporate, IT, and high-skill manufacturing jobs. It's the only long-term solution to growth in the region and so far, only Johnson City seems to be the only city who gets it.
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Old 11-05-2015, 06:28 AM
 
Location: Gray, TN
2,157 posts, read 3,951,533 times
Reputation: 906
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rangerred View Post

It's time for this area to look beyond the low-handing fruit of low skill/low pay manufacturing and invest in the resources necessary to attract corporate, IT, and high-skill manufacturing jobs. It's the only long-term solution to growth in the region and so far, only Johnson City seems to be the only city who gets it.
Have you been following the #onekingsport campaign? IMO Kingsport is doing an excellent job with the resources it has.

OneKingsport | #OneKingsport
https://onekingsport.com/2015/11/rec...mayors-summit/
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Old 11-05-2015, 07:25 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
28,286 posts, read 21,213,936 times
Reputation: 34696
Quote:
Originally Posted by rccrain View Post
Have you been following the #onekingsport campaign? IMO Kingsport is doing an excellent job with the resources it has.

OneKingsport | #OneKingsport
https://onekingsport.com/2015/11/rec...mayors-summit/
They have a slick website but Kingsport is and probably always will be dominated by Eastman. I firmly believe Eastman has discouraged Kingsport city leaders from economically diversifying. I really don't see much change on that front unless Eastman substantially contracts or relocates.

Johnson City doesn't have all their eggs in one basket like this.
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Old 11-05-2015, 09:26 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
28,286 posts, read 21,213,936 times
Reputation: 34696
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rangerred View Post
Johnson City Press: City takes first step toward $8 million donation to arts center

Looks like ETSU's performing arts center is a go for 1,300 seats thanks to a significant investment from Johnson City. This will put the center just over the capacity of the Niswonger Performing Arts Center in Greenville. I imagine the ETSU center will get similar artists and shows although maybe not as many due to ETSU being the primary user. I wonder if this facility will affect the viability of NPAC in Greeneville?

Johnson City Press: ETSU arts center expected to be boon for local economy

This article goes into more detail about the anticipated economic impact of the center. It looks to provide a substantial windfall for the city and the region but perhaps more importantly, amenities such as this are key to attracting high-paying corporate jobs and companies who value quality of life in a community. The Sierra Nevada example is perfect.

It's time for this area to look beyond the low-handing fruit of low skill/low pay manufacturing and invest in the resources necessary to attract corporate, IT, and high-skill manufacturing jobs. It's the only long-term solution to growth in the region and so far, only Johnson City seems to be the only city who gets it.
I don't know how much market there is for such facilities in the Tri-Cities. I think the people attending, employed by, or "hangers on" at the university are the primary audience. I think Johnson City draws a more sophisticated crowd and that this facility will pull from Greeneville. It's in a much more convenient location.

I know Dr. Smith (the person who headed the study) fairly well and he's probably the most rational, level-headed person in the business school and was one of the first people telling me I needed to get out of the area for better employment, so I'm surprised to see him come to some of these conclusions.

1) The construction impact is positive - those workers will be spending money at local restaurants for lunch, renting locally, going to Kroger and Food City, etc. Who knows what proportion of those workers are transient and will leave the area after the project ends.

2) I believe the statement about the center attracting "120 new students" is off base. The assumption is that the facility will attract 120 NEW students who are attending BECAUSE OF the center. I don't think they are going to get that many new students who wouldn't have otherwise attended the university. The increased revenues from students enrolling specifically for these programs appear to be wildly optimistic. Moreover, these majors are nearly useless in the employment market.

3) The simple fact that the facility is bigger and better doesn't necessarily mean the revenues will be higher, all other things equal. If the previous facilities held 500 people, but were regularly only serving 250 people, adding another 250/750 seats is just going to mean more empty seats - the "user base" didn't grow.

4) I can't see this being a draw throughout the southeast. If a performance is coming to a bigger city, there are likely facilities there. I can't see this drawing people outside the Mountain Empire. If anything, I think it's primarily going to draw off Niswonger and hurt that facility.

I think this is being driven by government incentives, and once the newness wears off, this will be another lightly used university building with the bill for upkeep and teachers being passed on to the students and local taxpayers.
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Old 11-05-2015, 09:54 AM
 
Location: Johnson City, TN
667 posts, read 821,493 times
Reputation: 449
Quote:
Have you been following the #onekingsport campaign? IMO Kingsport is doing an excellent job with the resources it has.

OneKingsport | #OneKingsport
https://onekingsport.com/2015/11/rec...mayors-summit/
I don't want to derail the thread but to address this, the website is very nice and I do think it is a good idea for Kingsport, with a new mayor and city manager, to chart a roadmap for the future. It just seems that nothing really innovative came out of this. Basically just ideas such as more downtown residents, incentivizing housing, walking/biking paths, etc. There was even talk of building a performing arts center (hmmm wonder where that idea came from...).

Kingsport is in a tough place right now. Eastman is Kingsport and I know the city officials are constantly under pressure from the company to make Kingsport a place that reflects the fact that is is the home of a Fortune 500 company. They don't want their employees living in Johnson City because that is where the retail, culture, and high-end homes are. Johnson City's emergence as the dominant city in the region in the past 20 years along with the decline of the industrial economy has hurt Kingsport. JC always had a more diverse economy and was able to thrive as ETSU grew and medicine became a larger/more lucrative industry. This allowed for more organic growth (as opposed to growth through annexation) and provided for the shift of wealth and accompanying retail sales to JC from Kingsport. Bristol is now starting to put the squeeze on Kingsport in the retail sector with The Pinnacle already cannibalizing a couple store locations in Kingsport.

Try as it might, Kingsport is not going to become Johnson City no matter how many fancy hotels, aquatic centers, performing arts centers, or high-end houses it builds. The innate cultural mix (and higher incomes) brought by ETSU, the VA, and the med center cannot be replicated.
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Old 11-05-2015, 10:24 AM
 
6,511 posts, read 7,501,071 times
Reputation: 17017
So, here is an interesting development: Bass Pro looking at Cabelas?

Wonder what happens if that deal goes through....

and Cabela's Bristol gets shuttered.....

And that little shopping center fades to dust?

Or maybe the Costco rumor could resurface in that location?

All just speculation, but it makes one think about the dynamic nature of our little economy.

Last edited by Ted Bear; 11-05-2015 at 10:37 AM..
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Old 11-05-2015, 10:33 AM
 
Location: Gray, TN
2,157 posts, read 3,951,533 times
Reputation: 906
Good point we'll keep the focus of this thread on JC. But honestly, I think much of the credit for the progress in Johnson City can be attributed to ideas originating in Kingsport. JC has certainly got on board in the last five years and due to inherent advantages is really surging out in front. I think that the advantage that get overlooked most often with JC is the transportation planning. JC is very navigable, the city just flows well, and certain things about it are in a way, scenic.

As for Bristol, I wouldn't call what it's doing as progress at all. Color me not impressed.
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