The St. Elmo area will soon see new changes. In a few years, people can experience more retailers, office space, parking, and another boutique hotel.

The $21 million dollar project will be right between Tennessee Avenue and St. Elmo Avenue near the Incline Railroad.

It is expected to roll out in three phases. Project officials call this transformational.

St. Elmo is a unique part of Chattanooga.

Project Architect Matt Lyle, says working with an owner who lives in that area is beneficial to creating a successful development. Lyle says the plan is to make this corridor a place to live work and play. “So there will be retail on the ground level to activate the sidewalk to make it a great place to shop,” said Matt Lyle. “Then there will be offices on the next level. Then some residential above that.”

Julie Todd, office manager of Body Wisdom a massage studio across the street from the potential development, agrees that the project should be done but in a certain way. Todd is most excited about the additional retail and parking space.

“We get a lot of visitors because of the incline next-door and Clumpies of course,” said Julie Todd. “A lot of times we will see them walking through and turning around because there's nothing to see you down here.”

Todd also hopes this area gives their business more exposure.

Lyle says the plans include a parking garage, and they want to make sure the new construction fits in with the buildings around it.

“Push that building up to the sidewalk edges, and what we will try to do is limit the height right on the street to mimic the historic heights around,” said Lyle.

The St. Elmo project will take several years to complete. Construction is expected to start this fall.