Gordon County officials said they are excited about a proposed industrial development south of Calhoun that could bring as many as 900 jobs.
The project would encompass close to 3 million square feet of developable space with a total value at buildout in the range of $185 million.
Staff at the Northwest Georgia Regional Commission have started a Development of Regional Impact review for the major industrial project sited on both sides of U.S. 41 just north of Adairsville in Gordon County.
DRI reviews — required for large projects — give notice to surrounding areas that could be affected and allow a chance for comments.
The submission indicates the project would include both manufacturing and warehouse space spread across four parcels, three of them on the east side of U.S. 41 and one large parcel on the west side of the highway.
Two developers are involved, OWR LLC, which is led by longtime Calhoun developer L.P. Owens, and Thor Equities LLC.
“It’s a compilation of private developers,” said James Ledbetter, Gordon County administrator. “This was unusual, in that some of the folks didn’t want it to be all included in one DRI because they are connected (geographically) but they are not connected (developmentally).”
The parcels are currently owned by several different entities, including the Development Authority of Gordon County, Con-onaula Farms, a trust in the name of William Hulsey, and Timothy Moore.
One tract owned by the Development Authority — 63.15 acres on the east side of U.S. 41 — already has one large building designated for Creative Flooring Solutions. The building was constructed on a speculative basis by the Owens-led group.
The DRI submission suggests that entire parcel would be earmarked for 1.46 million square feet of manufacturing space.
Another tract on the east side of the highway, some 68.15 acres owned by Con-onaula farms, is earmarked for upwards of 302,400 square feet of warehousing and distribution space.
The third tract on the east side of the highway, owned by Timothy Moore, covers 115.5 acres. It is proposed to house another 1.02 million square feet of warehouse and distribution use.
A 178.2-acre tract on the west side of U.S. 41, owned by the William Hulsey estate, is targeted for between 300,000 and 400,000 square feet of warehouse and distribution space.
The total traffic count is estimated at 1,000 vehicles per day, including trucks.
“It’s not really one big industrial park,” Ledbetter said. “We wish we had that sort of planning but it sort of came together this way.”
The development sits just north of the Bartow County line, with quick and easy access to Interstate 75 — either via U.S. 41 and Ga. 140 in Adairsville, or by traveling a short distance north up U.S. 41 to the new South Calhoun Bypass.
Just a mile or two to the south, there will be at least two tenants in the 766,000 square foot Ashley Capital warehouse/distribution center in the Georgia North Industrial Park off Ga. 140, according to Melinda Lemmon, executive director of the Cartersville-Bartow County Office of Economic Development.
Lemmon said neither company is ready to make a formal announcement of their decision to take space in that building.
The Ashley Capital website indicates the developer plans to build at least three more huge buildings in Adairsville. Those buildings would add another 2.4 million square feet of leasable space.
“The logistics/supply chain sector is just blowing up now,” said Lemmon.
The state’s webpage, Georgia.org, reports that 85% of the third party logistics firms operate in Georgia and 80% of the markets in the US are within a two-hour flight or two-day truck drive of the I-75 corridor.
The extensive Norfolk Southern and CSX rail lines are also a factor in the region’s growth for warehousing and distribution companies.
A primary CSX line, which funnels into the inland port in Murray County, runs along the western boundary of one of the parcels in the proposed Gordon County development.