WBDC and Franklin Realty Advisors

Dec 20, 2021


This episode of the podcast of the Worcester Business Development Corporation sees Host Hank Stolz joined by Julie Holstrom, Senior Projects Manager with the WBDC and their guest Charles “Chip” Norton Jr., Managing Director of Franklin Realty Advisors LLC.  Julie and Chip talk about the decades-long partnership between the WBDC and Franklin Realty Advisors and the projects they have done in Worcester and Central Massachusetts.  Special emphasis is placed on the Mercantile Center in Worcester and the Southbridge Innovation Center.


As a Senior Project Manager for the Worcester Business Corporation (WBDC) for over 10 years, Julie has successfully administered over $15 million in grant funds from local, state, and federal agencies. Julie has extensive knowledge of municipal and state governments, economic development, and expertise in grant writing and administration, government relations, and project management. Her ability to identify funding opportunities and assist in navigating a wide range of development issues allows her to manage projects effectively and efficiently. 

Charles “Chip” Norton Jr.

Charles “Chip” Norton Jr. is the Managing Director of Franklin Realty Advisors LLC, a regional real estate development, commercial property management, and advisory firm headquartered in Wellesley. The Wellesley native has been in the real estate industry since 1983 and is best known for his keen expertise in developing public/private partnerships and historic preservation projects.
Norton’s most significant projects in Central Massachusetts include Worcester’s Mercantile Center, the Worcester Business Center, and the Southbridge Innovation Center. The Mercantile Center redevelopment in the heart of downtown Worcester has transformed a previously underutilized space into a place to live, work, and play through attracting new tenants and revitalizing the space by creating large community areas and making major improvements to the property’s garage.


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