Hall County saw a booming economy in 2022, with 15 new and expanding firms projected to add 1,400 new jobs and $700 million in new capital investment.
“This year’s capital investment is the highest on record for Gainesville-Hall County’s EDC and more than double the previous record investment year in 2015 of $330 million,” according to a chamber press release this week.
“Furthermore, there are fundamental economic drivers to the local economy that indicate 2023 will feature a better than average economic performance for Gainesville-Hall County when compared to other metro areas in Georgia and the nation.”
Since 2015, the chamber’s economic development program has assisted 149 new and expanding businesses, which have announced 8,400 jobs and $2.4 billion in new capital investment.
The chamber’s economic development efforts “have achieved record results, in no small part because of our diverse and vibrant economy and a community of business and elected leaders that work together to achieve great things,” said Glennis Barnes, area manager for Georgia Power and chairman of the chamber’s Economic Development Council.
Existing industry expansions announced during 2022 include Agile Cold Storage, Elastron USA, King’s Hawaiian, Mar-Jac Poultry, Kubota Industrial Equipment, Syfan Logistics, Harris Products, Fox Factory, Zebra Technologies, Boost and Freedom Transport.
“Investments in new automation technologies and localizing the supply chain were recurring trends in the existing industry growth over the past year,” according to the chamber.
New corporate facilities announced in 2022 included GXO Logistics, Scanfil, Dart Advantage and new industrial building developments by Logistics Property Company and Crow Holdings, totaling nearly 1 million square feet of new light industrial space.
Year-end numbers don’t include previously announced projects that are expected to start construction in 2023, including the Georgia Ports Authority’s Northeast Georgia Inland Port terminal.
Some of the jobs and investments announced in 2022 have already taken place, but others, such as King’s Hawaiian, Kubota, Mar-Jac Poultry and Agile Cold Storage, will be investing in new automation equipment and creating jobs in 2023 and beyond.
Major commercial developments underway that will extend well into 2023 include Capstone Property Group’s mixed-use hotel and apartment development “The National,” Gainesville Solis II apartments in downtown Gainesville, as well as Bourbon Brothers and NoFo Brewing’s new location on the Midtown Greenway.
Additional downtown developments in the works for 2023 include the Interactive Neighborhood for Kids museum in Oakwood and additional downtown Flowery Branch investments.
Meanwhile, the Gainesville-Hall County labor force is at an all-time high at 106,773, as of November. More than 80 employers have job openings posted on a chamber website seeking full and part-time employees.
“The chamber provides a forum for the business community, educators and elected officials to work together on the issues that impact existing industries, small businesses, the health care community, retail and new business recruitment,” said Tim Evans, the chamber’s vice president of economic development.