February 19, 2016

Family makes plans for 600 Williamson acres

By Philip Mannie
– Nashville Business Journal –

Boyle Investment Co. is laying plans for 600 acres in Williamson County owned by Franklin’s Berry family.

The owners of the property at the junction of Goose Creek Bypass and Lewisburg Pike want to turn the land into a mixed-use development, combine residential and retail elements to create a New Urbanism neighborhood.

Boyle would develop the land in partnership with the Berry family if the project is approved.

"It’s preliminary as to what we are going to do, but it will be a multi-use project," says Phil Fawcett, executive manager for Boyle.

Fawcett says final plans will hinge on demand from the marketplace. "We’ve owned parts of this land in our family for 200 years," says Tyler Berry IV, who owns the property with his aunt. "There’ll be some public hearings in the next few months to discuss options." Berry confirms Boyle’s involvement and says when the time comes his family will use Boyle’s expertise. But he adds that plans are still sketchy.

He says the City of Franklin is preparing what Berry calls a “sub-area” for the location as part of a state-mandated initiative that calls on cities like Franklin to map out their urban growth boundaries. "What we’re trying to do is make sure that area develops into something special," says Berry.

Berry says he’s unsure how to value the 600 acres. That would depend on their eventual use ­ commercial land being more expensive than residential land ­ so a total cost is hard to pinpoint this early in the process.

There’s not much value to the land right now,” Berry says. Residential land in Cool Springs sold for around $30,000 per acre in 1991. Values are sure to be higher now.

The timing of Boyle’s master plan is unknown, although one observer thinks plans will be formulated sooner rather than later.

"It was my understanding they were going to develop a master plan by fall,” says Tom Miller, managing broker for The Parks Group, a commercial real estate company. Miller is one of Franklin’s aldermen-at-large. “The Berrys want to do something of quality. Master planning it is the best way to do that."