Support Us Button Widget

The Pop-Up Project to bring history alive at Mill Town


Learn history, experience art, and explore an abandoned building. | Photo by NOOGAtoday

Table of Contents

Have you ever had the desire to explore an old, abandoned building?

If you’re of the cautious variety, you’ve likely never followed through on that desire, and for good reason — trespassing, potentially unsafe building conditions, and (probably) ghosts.

This fall, Chattanoogans will get the chance to indulge their inner child and explore the history and space of what was one of the city’s largest employers back in the 1900s: the Standard Coosa Thatcher Mill (now shortened to Coosa Mill) — safely + legally, and (probably) without ghosts.


Local dance + production nonprofit The Pop-Up Project is working with the developer of Mill Town (an ongoing development surrounding + encompassing the abandoned mill) to:

  • Reactivate + reanimate the former mill
  • Allow folks to explore the abandoned building safely
  • Use art as a means to tell stories + the history of the mill
  • Leverage community engagement and tell locals’ stories


  • September + October | Four different, smaller shows leading up to…
  • November | The main event, with six different shows + an opportunity to explore. Sign up for the Pop-Up Project’s email list to get the show info first. Select your date + buy tickets here.

The fun details

  • The whole first floor of the mill + its performances will be ADA accessible, and Co-founder of the Pop-Up Project Jules Downum said that it will “always be bumpin’.”
  • One of the activities will pay homage to the incredible graffiti inside of the abandoned building with a graffiti workshop.
  • Speaking of graffiti… the developer (Collier) is offering full amnesty to artists who painted inside of the building — they wanna hear your story + give you credit for your work (or not, if you’d rather remain anonymous).
  • One room at the bottom of the mill will be converted into a 1920s-style speakeasy bar, so you can step out + take a break if needed.
  • The community’s help is a big aspect of this project. If you or someone you know has a connection to the neighborhood, mill, or the former company, contact The Pop-Up Projectthese stories will inform the performances.

Photo by NOOGAtoday

IMG_8605 (1)

Photo by NOOGAtoday


Photo by NOOGAtoday


Photo by NOOGAtoday