$250M town square in Spring Hill calls for moving historic orphanage

Courtesy: Gamble Design Collaborative

SPRING HILL, Tenn. (WKRN) – Most towns have a town square, but that’s not the case in Spring Hill. Much of its architecture was lost in a tornado and a fire several years ago.

Tennessee Children's Home (Photo: WKRN)
Tennessee Children’s Home (Photo: WKRN)

There’s now a proposal to build a new town square on a 103-acre site along Main Street.

The site is currently home to the Tennessee Children’s Home, a faith-based facility that provides housing and counseling for teenage boys.

The $250-million project calls for office, restaurant and retail space, as well as a park where families can gather for concerts and festivals.

There’s also space for a new city hall and public library to accommodate Spring Hill’s growing population.

“It’s going to be a mixed use community. We will have everything from the historic aspect and a visitor’s center aspect in the mansion to multi-family apartments. They’ll have townhouses. It’ll also have retail, restaurants, office buildings and those kinds of things,” said developer David Buschmann with Insight Properties.

Courtesy: Gamble Design Collaborative
Courtesy: Gamble Design Collaborative

While some of the existing buildings at the site will be torn down, the plan calls for the historic mansion to stay.

“We’re drawing from architecture of the past. The rhythm of the windows, the arcades, the storefronts of the streets… things that we see that are traditional, historic, Tennessee, small towns,” said Greg Gamble of Gamble Design Collaborative.

The center would bring more than 1,000 jobs to the area and $900,000 in property taxes to the city, not including retail tax.

“It would create that downtown focal point that the city could really use. It would give people an opportunity to come shop, work, play, live in that focal area,” said Spring Hill City Administrator Victor Lay.

The Tennessee Children’s Home is hoping the sale of the property will generate enough money so it can build a new campus to better serve its residents.

(Photo: WKRN)
(Photo: WKRN)

The project could still be a long time away. City leaders tell News 2 they are just now beginning the analysis phase.

The city is exploring using tax increment financing to fund the infrastructure.

A statement from President Brian King with the Tennessee Children’s Home said:

“The Tennessee Children’s Home has reached a crossroads where we either have to raise significant dollars to renovate our existing campus or we build an entirely new campus. We’re working with the city and Insight Properties to ensure we can not only fund our new campus but also provide a legacy for Spring Hill. This is a very exciting project that I believe will become the heart of this wonderful city.”

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