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Farragut Business Alliance plans organizational meeting

The thought of an alliance of strictly Farragut businesses is gaining momentum and support among business owners in Town limits.

Farragut Wine and Spirits owner David Purvis hopes such an alliance would provide support to local businesses and feedback to the Town.

“What we’re trying to do is have a positive voice about economic development in the Town,” Purvis said.

“It’s a resource for the community and for the Town to draw on as well.

“If we had multiple voices at the table, we could come up with positive ideas to impact economic development,” he added.

Other business owners agree with Purvis' idea.

Noah Myers, a developer of Renaissance | Farragut, said, “I think any organization that can assist Farragut businesses in the arenas of quality growth and sustainability is a good thing for the community.

“I look forward to being a contributing member and hope it can help provide a respected and vibrant business environment in Farragut,” he added.

Molly Stiles, Kroger Marketplace’s store manager, said, “I think any time you can have more input in your community that you live and work in, it’s better.”

Stiles equated the idea of an alliance to the “Buy in Farragut” campaign, a way to bring business owners together.

“I thought the “Buy in Farragut” campaign was a great idea,” she added.

Gary Palmer, associate Town administrator, also looked for the proposed alliance to promote Farragut merchants, “similar to how we promote the ‘Buy in Farragut’ campaign but on a year-round basis,” Palmer said.

Ken Coffey, owner of Snappy Tomato pizza, said a Farragut business alliance would be helpful in providing Town staff and elected officials with a business owner’s perspective.

“I’m fully supportive of it,” Coffey said.

“Some of the ordinances could evolve to present day, still keeping the integrity of the ordinance in place,” he added.

Palmer mentioned the possibility of creating “a liaison or informal forum between the Farragut businesses and Town Hall to discuss and resolve business related issues, like sign regulations, special events and zoning amendments.”

Alderman Tom Rosseel also supported the general idea of a gathering of Farragut business owners.

“Without knowing the details of the proposed Farragut Business Alliance, I think the Town would look forward to working with a merchants’ group whose purpose is to improve our community and strengthen our economic vitality,” Rosseel said.

“The key is to ensure that any proposed changes benefit the community, maintain the Town’s aesthetics or quality, and are applied equitably to all Farragut businesses,” he added.

Rosseel also mentioned the Town’s partnership with Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce, and its contributions to local schools and businesses.

Purvis made clear the alliance was not meant to be competition to Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce.

“We are advocates of the Chamber, and we encourage people to be a part of the Chamber,” he said.

“This is just meant to provide a voice to Farragut businesses,” he added.

Palmer expected the Business Alliance would “work in concert with the Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce for regional as well as local economic development promotion.” 

“The Town supports the local business community through its partnership with the Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce, and we especially appreciate the business community’s support of our local schools, athletic programs, and charitable organizations,” Rosseel said.

“I am fully supportive of our [Chamber] and I feel they are partners with the Town. … I’m interested in seeing what the focus might be for this new organization,” Mayor W. Edward “Eddy” Ford III said.

Purvis hopes to hold an organizational meeting at 11:30 a.m., Wednesday, Jan. 21, at Aubrey’s off Campbell Station Road.


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