Buoyed by the successful negotiations to buy 202 acres of the Braden Farm, the Rome-Floyd County Development Authority agreed Tuesday to move forward with efforts to identify the next significant area for industrial development.
Authority President Missy Kendrick told members that some statewide project managers are “really excited” about the potential to develop the Braden tract at U.S. 411 and Bass Ferry Road.
Lost in the announcement of the deal last week was the authority’s decision to acquire a 2-acre tract on Old Shannon Road at the Northwest Georgia Regional Industrial Park site.
The authority recently took an option to acquire more than 30 acres just to the east of the existing industrial park.
The 2-acre parcel “ties the property together,” Kendrick said. The deal creates a 102.29-acre rail-served industrial site.
Kendrick, who participated in the meeting with the authority by Zoom from Tampa, said that she’s just come off of the busiest July in her career as an economic developer.
“We responded to 17 different projects, requests for information or extra meetings, whatever,” Kendrick said. “We’re working on some second site visits on some of our projects, so I’m excited about what we’ve got coming up.”
The authority is also looking to help with potential brownfield locations in Rome, Cave Spring and Floyd County.
A brownfield is a site where re-use may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous material.
Leadership in all three jurisdictions are putting together a list of brownfield sites to include in an application for grant money to assess ways of cleaning up the contaminants.
One of the most notable local brownfield sites is the former O’Neil Manufacturing location, a 7 acre tract off Anderson Street in North Rome.
Also on Tuesday, Pete McDonald was elected to another three-year term on the authority. Jimmy Byars was re-elected to serve as chairman for another year. McDonald will serve as vice-chair and Doc Kibler will continue to serve as secretary.
Kendrick is in Tampa attending meetings of the Southern Economic Development Council. She is Georgia’s alternative representative to that 17-state agency, which meets with economic developers and site selection consultants from around the world.