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Unveiled> 505 Church Street
Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture design an eco-sensitive skyscraper in Nashville.
Courtesy Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture

505 Church Street
Architect: Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture
Client: Giarratana Nashville
Location: Nashville, TN
Completion: TBD

Nashville developer Tony Giarratana doesn’t want just any building to take the place of a downtown parking lot his firm has owned for 20 years. On nearby sites he has built the city’s first high-rise apartments and condos, and its first “modern urban grocery store,” but 505 Church Street is a special case.

“This is the best site in the city,” said Giarratana, “so we feel that it needs to be something special.” The firm hired Chicago-based Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill to master plan and design a mixed-use tower that would be the city’s most energy efficient and also its tallest. Giarratana successfully petitioned the Federal Aviation Authority to grant the site extra airspace. Originally designed as a 605-foot tower, 505 Church could rise to 750 feet.

Currently, Giarritana is seeking an anchor tenant to take at least 500,000 square feet of the 1.2 million-plus-square-foot tower. The building will include a hotel and office space as well as eight levels of underground parking, according to preliminary designs. 505 Church Street’s southern profile is a thin, glassy rectangle, but from the east and west its profile is defined by fin-like curves. The unique enclosure features an internally ventilated cavity that stores solar heat during cold months and wicks it away when it is warm.


The design and development team is seeking a LEED Platinum rating for the building. It will employ such sustainable features as a double skin facade system, chilled water storage, solar panels, gray water recycling, and a variety of other integrated building systems in pursuit of the 2030 Challenge to achieve carbon-neutral architecture.

Chris Bentley