Mystery company considers Albany as plant site - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Mystery company considers Albany as plant site

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By Jennifer Emert - bio | email

October 15, 2008

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Two sites in Albany are among six in Georgia, as well as sites in 13 other states vying for the project. The state approached local leaders about available land and existing space. Now the Albany-Dougherty Economic Development Authority is trying to show why Albany is the best choice.

It's been ten years since Delphi closed their Albany plant on Holly Drive. Several other businesses have done work here since and now a another manufacturer is looking at the space along the with recently vacated Bridgestone/Firestone Distribution Building.

 "It's a manufacturing project it could possibly create 900 new jobs over $200 million of new investment in the area," says EDC Special Projects Director Justin Strickland.  "The Albany Dougherty Economic Development Commission has forwarded infrastructure information about the buildings to the state for the site selection committee.

"Utilities, infrastructure, whether or not it's rail served. Square footage is the big thing they need 400 thousand square feet of space," says Strickland. 

The unnamed company is looking at sites elsewhere in Georgia and in 13 other states. Economic officials say attracting new business is more competitive than ever. They'll be selling what Albany can offer that other locations can't.

"We have a great workforce pool for companies to look at, we have tons of water so we site here on top of several deep water aquifers, we also have good water, which is a huge benefit to them as well as available land and buildings," said EDC Vice President Andrea Schruijer.

Georgia offers the Quick Start program that trains a customized workforce free of charge for qualified Georgia businesses, as well as other incentives that other states don't offer. 

"Job tax credits that are offered, also investment tax credits, Albany offers the Freeport Tax credit, there's several different tax credits through the state for companies that are looking at our communities," said Schruijer.

The EDC is reworking their website and logo because they say you never know when a business may be looking at the community.

The venture prompted the Economic Development Commission to ask WG&L and Georgia Power to help them survey vacant businesses so when the state approaches them with prospects, they'll have the information on file.

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