On Monday, an article was published in the City Paper by William Williams called "No need to announce project unless its a go." You can read the article here.
The whole premise of "don’t announce, just build", at least in the residential, misses a crucial point, which is that 95% of projects can never happen without pre-sales. The banks require at least 50% for most developers; even more in this tight credit market. The market determines if projects are viable. That is a good thing, because things which are not viable, do not get built. One has to announce if one is going to take a project to market. But, there is no need to build if the project does not sell.
Though disappointing to hear lots of no go announcements, the announcements are a sign of vitality and excitement that spurs creativity, vision and optimism. The fact is, $100s of millions of projects have happened, and are happening, downtown. Historical neighborhoods have been restored and revitalized, and a vibrant new industry of city living and the affiliated commercial and public sector economic vitality are emerging. Urban Nashville is actually becoming quite vibrant.