Johnson City celebrates completion of 401 Ashe Street

June 14, 2024

Johnson City celebrates completion of 401 Ashe Street

Yesterday (June 13), the Johnson City Board of Commissioners joined City staff to celebrate the completion of 401 Ashe Street with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

“This historic day ushers in a new era for a building that holds significant importance to Johnson City and Washington County’s past,” said City Manager Cathy Ball. “This magnificent building, which was once central to City affairs, will again welcome citizens and visitors to conduct business for the betterment of the region.”

The Johnson City Postal Savings Bank and Post Office served as the Washington County courthouse from 1940 until 1985. Several years later, the building was renovated and became the home of Washington County’s 911 Emergency Communications District until 2017.

After the last tenant left, the building sat empty for several years. In 2022, the City acquired the building and three related parcels at 401 Ashe Street through a deed transfer from Washington County. In that same year, a $5 million appropriation from the state of Tennessee created an opportunity for thoughtful restoration. Today, the building has renewed life with carefully considered details.

“We are grateful for state, regional and our commission’s support that made the renovation of this building possible,” said Economic Development Director Alicia Summers. “This historic piece of architecture is an anchor for the West Walnut redevelopment project and will be used for rural economic development.”

The request for proposals, which had a deadline of June 5, attracted many interested prospective tenants. Currently, the selection committee is evaluating the qualified candidates. Following this review and subsequent commission approval, the building is expected to be occupied by fall 2024.