Hall County Economic Development
LocationNothing can equal the ability of Hall County's location to lure business and industry. Enterprising companies seem to have discovered the many economic opportunities available in Gainesville and Greater Hall County. Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce Low cost. Pro-business environment. Transportation advantages. All this can be found less than an hour from Atlanta, the hub of the Southeast. Of course, tourism thrives around the development of Lake Lanier, the nearby mountains, and the urbanization of South Hall County.
EmployersFor generations, agribusiness has been the cornerstone of economic growth in Hall County. As the "Poultry Capital of the World," Hall County generates over $150 million in poultry related products and services each year. However, the industry mix in Hall County is rapidly diversifying, and is now home to 35 Fortune 500 companies representing approximately 300 manufacturing concerns.
Currently manufacturing is the number two employer in the area employing 29.5% of the 64,929 available workers. Some of the larger manufacturing employers are Fieldale Farms Corp., ConAgra, Poultry Company, Peachtree Doors and Windows, and Mar-Jac, Inc.,Cottrell, Inc., William Wrigley Jr. Company, Kubota Manufactuing of America, SKF USA, and Siemans Automotive.
Fourty foreign companies representing nine countries are located in Hall County. A few of these companies are ZF Industries, Inc., Merial Select, Inc., Stork Gamco, Inc., Glidden Paint, and Norton Construction Products
Four new industries have located to Hall County in since July 1, 1998 creating 60 new jobs and an investment of over $7 million. Gainesville Industrial Park West opened across from Chicopee Golf Course in South Hall County and a spec building has recently been completed in Industrial Park South. There are 12 industrial parks in Gainesville-Hall County.
Business Unites with EducationThrough the efforts of the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce, great strides have been taken by business and industry and their commitment to education. The Chamber of Commerce founded Quality Education Strategy Team or QuEST, a program to improve the employability of individuals in this community by providing leadership and support for a school-to-career initiative. Since its inception in 1995, over 200 placements of students as apprentices in local industries have been made. Over 75 teachers and counselors have served internships and the program has become a model in the State of Georgia. A video on this program is available from the Chamber of Commerce.
Lanier Tech's Quick StartA program of Lanier Technical Institute, Quick Start is one of Georgia's internationally renowned job training programs administered by the Georgia Department of Technical and Adult Education. Quick Start works closely with industry officials to customize job training programs and meet the specific needs of operations locating or expanding in the area. Lanier Tech is the local coordinator of the Quick Start program and is responsible for implementing all training activities.
Hall County is home to two institutions of higher learning, Brenau University and Gainesville College. There are an additional five major educational resources within an hour of Hall County:
Georgia State University, Atlanta
Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech), Atlanta
Atlanta University Center, Atlanta
Emory University, Atlanta
University of Georgia, Athens
In addition, several other institutions of higher learning are located close by, including North Georgia College and State University in Dahlonega; Truett-McConnell in Cleveland; and, Piedmont College in Demorest.
TourismAs home to Lake Sidney Lanier, the Greater Hall area attracts some 16 million visitors annually. As the most popular U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' lake in the nation, it is the catalyst for a thriving service economy which accounts for almost 30% of the total employment in Hall County. A recent survey measured Lake Lanier's impact at more than $2 billion annually. Telecommunications County BellSouth Telecommunications customers are within the expanded Metro Atlanta toll-free calling area, covering 7,914 square miles and almost 2.5 million customers. This telephone exchange is interconnected with Atlanta and the rest of the world through diverse-routed fiber optic trunk cables, providing protection against service failure due to accidental cable damage. With Gainesville as the center point, local loop fiber optic cables are currently in place running outward in eight compass point directions. BellSouth's local network provides complete high-speed digital data services including ISDN and frame relay. A number of long distance, Internet and cellular phone providers are offered in Hall County.
Source: Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce