Noah Mabry and Singleton Hicks are the latest businessmen to take interest in the Parsons Avenue corridor.

Their new landscape-architect firm, Foreground Studios, is a bit south of the core of the strip's busy revival area.

"We know we're a little ahead of the curve," Mabry said.

Their new 2,000-square-foot building -- called the Vassor, a nod to the surrounding Vassor Village neighborhood -- will be built at 1632-1638 Parsons. It is now an empty field.

Foreground Studios will take half of the space and lease the remaining half. There is room to expand on the property, Mabry said.

The firm was started in 2008. Mabry lives in Southern Orchards, just south of Nationwide Children's Hospital. Hicks is a resident of the Northland area.

"I had my own reservations because I didn't live down here," Hicks said, "but I can see the charm and draw of the area."

The firm specializes in residential home design, but is slowly moving into commercial and multifamily, they said.

Brian Higgins, executive director of the Parsons Avenue Redevelopment Corp., said the two parcels are part of the City Land Bank, meaning the city has acquired the property.

Higgins said he is helping Mabry and Hicks with financing and development technical assistance on the project.

He said "they're ahead of the curve" on that part of Parsons.

"To see young entrepreneurs take a chance on an obvious site bodes well for the economic health of the community," said Higgins, a principal with Arch City Development, a real-estate consulting service.

gseman@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekGary