FRANKLIN, Tenn. – The Heritage Foundation of Williamson County, TN will partner with Williamson, Inc. via a multiyear lease agreement for one of the two mansions on the property of the former O’More College of Design. Williamson, Inc. will create the Idea Center, an innovation and entrepreneurship center in the Fleming-Farrah mansion.
“This is an exciting day that we are able to announce such an integral partnership in our multi-use plan for the campus,” said Bari Beasley, Heritage Foundation CEO. “The Idea Center is one of many unique spaces that will be developed on the property. The resources and programs that will be provided through the Idea Center will fuel our local entrepreneurial environment and continue to cultivate successful businesses in Williamson County.”
Williamson, Inc. will create both office and shared spaces for businesses seeking creative resources, collaboration and support as a blooming business in Williamson County. At this time, partners for this project include Columbia State Community College, Nashville Capital Network, the Nashville Entrepreneur Center and the Nashville Technology Council. More local and regional partners will be added in the future.
President and CEO of Williamson, Inc. Matt Largen added, “We are thrilled to partner with the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County to create a physical space for entrepreneurs involved in scalable ventures across Williamson County. Promoting and supporting a culture of entrepreneurship provides long-term stability for an economy. The entrepreneurs of today will become the sustainable employers of tomorrow. Engaging them early and providing support and resources to keep them in Williamson County will be critical to the success of our economy. The former O’More campus will provide a launching pad for companies that are looking for a collaborative environment and office space in the downtown Franklin core.”
Yesterday, the Foundation announced it will exercise its option to purchase the property from Belmont University with a formal closing in first quarter 2019. The Heritage Foundation is currently working on a capital campaign to fulfill the complete vision for the multi-use campus. To participate in the campaign, contact Heritage Foundation CEO Bari Beasley at email@example.com.
About the Property
Located in the heart of downtown Franklin, the seven-acre campus includes the Abbey Leix Mansion, also known as the Winstead House, which was built c.1870 and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979 and the Fleming-Farrah building, also knowns as the Haynes-Tyler Berry House, which was built c. 1901. The property also sits within the 16-square-block Franklin Historic District.
About the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County, TN
Since 1967, the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County, TN has been dedicated to protecting and preserving Williamson County’s architectural, geographic and cultural heritage and promoting the ongoing revitalization of downtown Franklin in the context of historic preservation. Notable projects include the Franklin Theatre, Roper’s Knob, parts of the Franklin battlefield and the Old, Old Jail. The Foundation brings county history to about 3,000 public, private and home-schooled children each year through the Heritage Classroom program and walking tours of downtown Franklin. Events and festivals produced by the Heritage Foundation such as Main Street Festival, the Heritage Ball, Pumpkinfest and Dickens of a Christmas bring hundreds of thousands of locals and visitors to the county each year. For more information on the Heritage Foundation, visit www.williamsonheritage.org.
About Williamson, Inc.
Williamson, Inc. is the premiere source for business and economic development initiatives in Williamson County. As the chamber of commerce and economic development office in Williamson County, Williamson, Inc. uses an innovative approach to building a prosperous business community through educational programs, networking events, beneficial services, vocal business advocacy and business growth opportunities. Connect with Williamson, Inc. at www.williamsonchamber.com, on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.