Baptist college in Nashville agrees to sell campus to homebuilder

Baptist college in Nashville agrees to sell campus to homebuilder

If Welch College completes the sale, it will move forward with construction of a new campus in Gallatin, Tenn.

Continuing a years-long effort to sell its campus and move to a new location, Welch College, a private Baptist institution in Nashville, Tenn., says an area home builder has agreed to buy most of the property.

The sale will clear the way for the 400-student college to build a new campus in Gallatin, about 30 miles northeast of Nashville.

In a letter posted on the school’s web site, college president J. Matthew Pinson said the school had reached an agreement with Mike Ford Custom Builders to acquire most of the Welch campus in the West End neighborhood of Nashville. The proposed sale includes about seven acres—all campus property except the college library building.

The emergence of a new buyer comes on the heels of an Austin, Texas, developer backing out of plans to buy the property. That group had wanted to build four-story condominiums, but neighbors were opposed.

In 2013, Aquinas College, a nearby Catholic institution, agreed to buy the Welch site, but subsequently withdrew the offer because of potential zoning problems related to parking.

Welch College has been planning for several years to move to a new location. After determining that the college needed to expand and that the existing campus could not accommodate the growth, the college purchased 66 acres in Sumter County, Tenn., in 2008.

The collapse of the economy in 2008 stalled the school’s efforts to sell the campus and move forward with the relocation.

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