Several recent economic development announcements in Georgia are located near the Appalachian Regional Port in Murray County.
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp recently announced roughly $574 million in new investments and 3,629 new jobs created in nearly every region of the state during the month of July.
“From advanced manufacturing to software development, jobs at every skill level and in nearly every region of the state were created for hardworking Georgians during July,” said Gov. Kemp. “As we fight to protect the lives and livelihoods of hardworking Georgians in an unprecedented economic climate, this news serves as a great start to the fiscal year.”
Among those investments, GEDIA Automotive Group announced July 24 it will build an advanced manufacturing facility that will begin production with a focus on parts for electric vehicles. GEDIA will invest $85 million in this project, delivering 200 jobs to the greater Dalton area in Whitfield County.
“Moving closer to the original equipment manufacturers allows us to serve the American market even better,” said Markus Schaumburg, one of two GEDIA Automotive Group CEOs. “In addition, our new innovative production facility with 200 planned positions not only increases the value of our company, but also contributes to the ongoing development of Whitfield County.”
GEDIA joins other companies bringing manufacturing and logistics operations to North Georgia.
GE Appliances recently opened its $32 million Southern Logistics Center in Murray County. The project is located two miles from the Appalachian Regional Port (ARP), the inland terminal by which the Georgia Ports Authority provides expedited rail service to the region. GE chose the location specifically for the site’s proximity to the ARP and its central location relative to the company’s manufacturing sites. The 500,000 square-foot logistic center supplies nine U.S. factories with more than 2 billion parts and components.
Similarly, Huali Floors, a leading manufacturer of resilient flooring, will establish its first U.S. headquarters and manufacturing facility in Murray County. Huali Floors is creating 315 new jobs and investing more than $27 million in an existing facility.
Another recent flooring announcement in North Georgia came from Creative Flooring Solutions.
A manufacturer of laminate, wood, and luxury vinyl tile, CFL will create 300 jobs and invest more than $70 million in a new manufacturing facility in Calhoun. CFL employs 3,500 at three factories, multiple offices, and distribution centers around the world.
In a separate announcement, U.S.-based Wellmade Flooring will invest more than $35 million to expand its manufacturing facilities to Bartow County, delivering 240 jobs to the area. Wellmade specializes in the design, production, and distribution of hard surface flooring. Headquartered in Portland, Ore., Wellmade serves several Atlanta-based companies including The Home Depot and Floor & Décor.
The ARP provides an efficient, direct link to the Port of Savannah. Shipping lines’ recognition of the inland port as an official container yard and the routing of more cargo through the facility have contributed to increased volumes. For Fiscal Year 2020, the ARP handled more than three and a half times the cargo it did the year before, moving 27,132 containers, up 19,610 boxes.