How Williamson County helped lure Amazon to Nashville
Nov 26, 2018
"The historic century homes, tree-lined streets and shops of Franklin. Sprawling horse farms and the private estates of half of Nashville's music stars in Leiper's Fork ... The elegant suburban style of Brentwood, and the retail bustle of Cool Springs."
While Nashville won't be the next HQ2, Amazon's announcement last week that it will build a hub to oversee its eastern U.S. operations and bring 5,000 jobs was a sweet consolation prize for the region's economic development leaders.
The company announced those jobs will pay an average annual salary of $150,000.
It's too early to pinpoint where those employees will decide to live, but those six-figure salaries mean that homes in Williamson County, which boasts among the highest housing costs in Tennessee, will be within reach.
The Nashville chamber's pitch also highlighted Williamson County Schools, along with Metro Nashville Public Schools and Montgomery County Schools, as hot spots for "technology education in K-12 public schools."
The pitch details "over 40 innovative technological pathways" in Williamson County Schools, its "computational thinking curriculum throughout all grade levels," and its robotics and coding classes offered as early as elementary school.
"A lot of people at Amazon with families will look to Williamson County for the school system," said Matt Largen, CEO of Williamson Inc., the county's chamber of commerce.
Largen, who has worked alongside the Nashville chamber to sell Middle Tennessee as a burgeoning hub for technology investment, said the new Amazon facility will help cement that reputation.
"A name like Amazon and the kind of jobs they're bringing in, I think is a result of that effort for sure, but it absolutely validates us as a great location for tech jobs," he said.