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  • Metro Water to Host Public Meeting On Proposed Downtown Flood Wall

    by Debby Dale Mason | Feb 27, 2015
    Earlier this week, Mayor Karl Dean and Metro Water Services unveiled a $100 million plan to build a flood wall in downtown Nashville along the west bank of the Cumberland River.

    The proposed wall would protect the city in the event of a flood even larger than the 2010 flood that caused $2 billion in damages and inundated several downtown blocks for a week. The growth and investment that has taken place downtown since 2010, including major developments in SoBro, would make the impact of any future downtown flooding even more costly.  

    The 2,100-foot-long flood wall will run along First Avenue from the new West Riverfront Park amphitheater to Fort Nashboro. A permanent 900-foot wall will be included within the park, while the remainder of the wall will include removable partitions that could be placed within eight hours. This system, which is is included in the 2015-2016 Metro Capital Improvements Budget, represents a significant investment in Nashville's downtown core that benefits the entire city. 

    Next Tuesday, Metro Water Services Director Scott Potter will hold a public meeting to share the same detailed presentation that was given to media on Feb. 25. Additional engineers and project managers will be on hand ...
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    Category: General
  • Proposed Transatlantic Trade Agreement a 'Game-Changer'

    by Lori Odom | Feb 25, 2015
    The EU and U.S. economies combined represent half the world's global GDP, and the two economies have long enjoyed a mutually beneficial trade relationship. On Feb. 25, members of our International Business Council heard from an expert panel about the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and its implications on the global economy.

    TTIP is a proposed comprehensive free trade agreement between the U.S. and the 28 member states of the European Union. Guest panelists Klint Alexander, of Baker Donelson's Global Business Team; Consuls General Jeremy Pilmore-Bedford of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and Christoph Sander of Germany; and David Short, FedEx Express, described TTIP as a "game-changer" that will level the playing field for U.S. and EU businesses.

    The agreement seeks to streamline the trading process between the two global economic giants by reducing or eliminating tariffs and harmonizing regulatory standards for health and safety -- both of which currently create bureaucratic costs that are passed along to consumers. Our experts predicted that the successful negotiation of TTIP will usher in a new era in transatlantic relations, and would also increase exports, create jobs, boost production and grow the economies of all the nations involved.

    If successful, TTIP can ...
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  • Partnership Unveils Ambitious Economic Development Strategy

    by Courtney Ross | Feb 20, 2015

    Nashville is enjoying a period of unprecedented economic growth and prosperity, and is also earning national media coverage as America's "it city." But this wasn't always the case. In 1989, Nashville was experiencing a significant downturn in economic performance, at a time when the rest of the nation was thriving. The Wall Street Journal published an article connecting Nashville's poor performance to a lack of foresight.

    The groundwork for our current boomtown status was laid in 1990, when a group of visionary community leaders created the Partnership, a regional economic development strategy. Since that time, Middle Tennessee's economy has steadily climbed to new heights, creating the success story we have today. And we believe the past 25 years are just the beginning. Just like in 1989, we cannot expect to continue our growth without a strategic vision.

    Yesterday, we unveiled an ambitious, complex and robust five-year economic development plan that will lead the way for continued long-term prosperity in the Nashville region.

    The new strategy focuses on three key strategic drivers that will not only build on our achievements, but also identify areas of progress and critical need to ensure the region’s future economic vitality. These are economic prosperity, talent ...

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  • Member Spotlight - Leland, Inc.

    by Lindsay Chambers | Feb 09, 2015

    Q: Describe a recent challenge and how you addressed it.
    A: Like any business, we face challenges every day, and we always try to address them with the utmost care. We recently contracted a job in Nashville with an out-of-state firm. When we arrived, the scope of work was presented differently than what we had submitted our bid for. We tactfully discussed the changes, and still finished well before the deadline.

    Q: What's your biggest goal for your company in the next year?
    A: Leland, Inc. wants to increase its capabilities to service the demand for Nashville's expanding public sector and commercial market in the construction industry.

    Q: What's your best piece of advice for other business owners?
    A: Be yourself. Be honest and fulfill the promises that you make.

    Q: How do you define success?
    A: "Success is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm." - Winston Churchill

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    Category: General
  • Celebrating Our Outstanding Young Professionals

    by Alex Hughes | Feb 04, 2015
    Guest post by Stephanie Winn, Chamber manager of talent attraction & retention

    The Chamber's YP Nashville initiative launched the Nashville Emerging Leader Awards (NELAs) program in 2006 to celebrate outstanding young leaders for their contributions to the growth of our workforce and our region. To date, the NELAs program has recognized more than 600 young professionals as finalists and award recipients in 15 industry categories.

    Every year, it's inspiring to receive hundreds of NELAs applications from throughout Middle Tennessee. These exemplary professionals are exceeding their goals, hitting their stride in their careers and making the Nashville area a better place to live and work.

    Who will be in the 2015 class of NELAs finalists and winners? Be part of the excitement by downloading a 2015 application or nominating an outstanding young professional today. The deadline for nominations is Tuesday, Feb. 10, and applications from the nominees are due Tuesday, Feb. 17.

    Who should be nominated?
    We all know someone who shows admirable character, both at work and in the community. Perhaps you have a mentee who has put in the extra mile to develop his/her career, or a coworker who is leading the charge through a local community organization. Maybe ...
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    Category: Workforce
  • Nashville a National Leader in Advanced Manufacturing

    by Courtney Ross | Feb 04, 2015
    Advanced manufacturing, particularly in the automotive sector, has been one of the industries driving Middle Tennessee's economy since Nissan located an assembly plant in Smyrna in the early 1980s. Since that time, General Motors has also established strong operations in Middle Tennessee, and Nissan has increased its manufacturing presence, as well as locating its headquarters in Williamson County. We've also seen tremendous growth in the number of supporting companies that make automotive parts. Just since July, expansions and relocations from automotive suppliers such as Magna International and M-Tek have accounted for a total of more than 960 jobs.

    According to a new study by the Brookings Institute, the Nashville region has had more job growth in advanced manufacturing since the recession than any other metro area in the country, largely due to the success of auto manufacturers. For the purposes of the research, Brookings defined advanced manufacturers as companies where at least one in five employees specializes in technology, engineering, science or math.

    The future of advanced manufacturing in Middle Tennessee remains bright. As Nissan's local manufacturing plants continue to grow, the automaker has teamed with the Tennessee Board of Regents to build a $35 million education and training facility ...
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  • Member Spotlight - Music City Sports Festival

    by Lindsay Chambers | Feb 02, 2015
    Q. What is the Music City Sports Festival?
    A. Nashville native and longtime sportscaster George Plaster is hosting this special two-day event to encourage health and fitness for children and their families. On May 30 and 31, there will be a wide variety of interactive sports clinics for children ages 4 to 18 at the Music City Center. Clinics include hockey, basketball, football, baseball, softball, archery, fishing, tennis, ping-pong, martial arts, soccer, lacrosse, running, gymnastics, dance, cheerleading and rugby. Another component is a world-class speaker series which has included national celebrities like future Baseball Hall of Famer Chipper Jones, Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow, ESPN analyst Herm Edwards and more.

    On Wednesday, Feb. 25, George Plaster and Mayor Karl Dean will unveil exciting plans for the 2015 Music City Sports Festival. Nashville-area business and community leaders are invited to attend this special kickoff event from 10 to 11 a.m. in the Electric Room on the fourth floor of the Omni Hotel. Please RSVP to or call 615-305-8264.

    Q. How can Nashville-area business and community leaders participate?
    A. Attend the Feb. 25 kickoff at the Omni Hotel to learn about sponsorship opportunities, or call Chris Kulick at 615-305-8248 or Bonnie ...
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    Category: General
  • Google Fiber Announces Service in Nashville

    by Courtney Ross | Jan 28, 2015
    Ending a year of speculation, Google announced yesterday that Nashville will be one of the newest cities in the country to receive its Google Fiber gigabit Internet service, which is about 100 times faster than the average Internet speed available in the U.S.

    According to Kevin Lo, director of Google Fiber business and operations, Nashville's thriving music scene and the city's growing reputation as an entrepreneurial and technology hub made Music City a strong location for super-high-speed service.

    Access to the fiber network is based on demand. Once the network nears completion, the company will ask individuals to sign up for service, and start building out "fiberhoods" where interest is highest. To stay up to date, click here.

    This amenity will undoubtedly improve our community in many ways. It will help us nurture our local startups, and will also contribute to our overall quality of place and livability, which is increasingly important in our recruitment, retention and expansion efforts.

    Kevin Lo, director of Google Fiber business and operations, greets Mayor Karl Dean at the official announcement of Google Fiber's launch in Nashville on Jan. 27.
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    Tags: Google fiber
  • Take Your Business Global With Free Exporting Advice

    by Lori Odom | Jan 26, 2015
    Did you know that 96 percent of the world’s consumers live outside of the United States, and that 70 percent of the world’s purchasing power is outside the U.S.?

    Exporting is an excellent way to grow your small or midsized business. If there is a market for your product in the U.S., there is definitely a market for your product overseas. Going global can only grow your market and increase its receptivity. Getting involved internationally decreases your business’ sole reliance on the American economy, thereby increasing opportunity for longevity and stability. As trade grows exponentially and trade barriers fall, staying domestic means missing opportunities.

    TNTrade provides free services to help Tennessee businesses expand internationally. Since 2012, the state-run program has helped more than 200 businesses connect with companies in Mexico, the UK, the EU and China. With the support of in-state export specialists and foreign offices, a company can receive one set of services from up to two different markets per year. These can include market checks, market strategies, market entry requirements, business partner searches, and trade events and travel assistance. The best part? These services are offered at no cost to you.

    To make exporting easy for Tennessee businesses, ...
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  • Thousands Show Support For Ft. Campbell

    by Lindsay Chambers | Jan 21, 2015
    Guest post by Ralph Schulz, president & CEO, Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce

    The pictures in the newspapers and on television didn’t do it justice.

    On Jan. 20, it was my privilege to join Gov. Haslam, other elected officials and thousands of friends and neighbors from across Middle Tennessee and Southern Kentucky for a listening session held by Pentagon officials at Ft. Campbell. The Army brass wanted to hear from Ft. Campbell’s neighbors about potential force reductions which could result in the number of active-duty military personnel stationed at the post being cut in half. Clearly, these drastic cuts could have clear economic consequences for the region.

    About 1,500 area residents were able to make their way inside Ft. Campbell’s Family Resource Center before the local fire marshal closed the doors, and another 500 were able to view the proceedings by remote camera hookup at an auditorium nearby. Military police decided the listening session was at capacity and had to turn another 2,900 people away when Ft. Campbell’s Gate One was closed. The event was streamed live over the Internet, and organizers estimate another 700 people watched the proceedings online. It was an amazing show of support and the largest ...
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    Category: General