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State Farm Advances Dunwoody Project

Feb 13, 2017
Courtesy of Atlanta Business Chronicle

State Farm Insurance Co.’s 2.2 million-square-foot campus is kicking off its second phase, further distancing Dunwoody from its suburban roots, with a new walkable district connected by transit and lined with street-level retail.

Lorenzo Zambino, 5, with Brasfield & Gorrie crew at the construction site of the Center for Advanced Pediatrics, which will be located on the North Druid Hills Campus.
Children's Healthcare of Atlanta

According to this week’s Atlanta Business Chronicle, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta plans to build a $1 billion to $1.3 billion hospital on a 46-acre site at North Druid Hills Road and Interstate 85 in the city of Brookhaven.

The new facility will address worsening space constraints at Children’s – which currently has campuses in downtown Atlanta, Sandy Springs and on Clifton Road – and will allow the hospital to meet forecasted patient care and space needs through 2026 and projected demand to 2036 and beyond.

Five miles from the Port of Savannah, developers will add five million square feet of storage space on 500 acres of land recently sold by the Georgia Ports Authority.
Tasnim Shamma / WABE

The Georgia Ports Authority recently sold 500 acres of land for a private developer to build warehousing, distribution and transload facilities.

This is in response to growing demand from businesses for more storage space. The Georgia Ports Authority said it expects this sale will help it get closer to becoming a U.S. gateway port.

In 2015, more than 10.3 percent of all U.S. container exports left from the Port of Savannah.

Coca-Cola CEO, Muhtar Kent
Courtesy of Coca-Cola

Coca-Cola is the first Fortune 500 Atlanta company to come out against President Donald Trump's executive order on immigration.

Tech companies like Google and Microsoft responded loudly against the executive order this weekend.

But many of Atlanta's largest publicly-traded companies aren't talking about it.

Coca-Cola CEO Muhtar Kent said he doesn't support President Trump's executive order and is working to help employees who may be affected.

Jackson Healthcare Plans $100M Alpharetta Campus Expansion

Jan 30, 2017

Staffing giant Jackson Healthcare is designing a $100 million expansion of its Alpharetta campus, with Italian Renaissance-inspired architecture featuring a replica of the Roman Colosseum.

The historic Covington courthouse in Newton County.
Johnny Kauffman / WABE

A new $100 million film and television complex planned in Covington will be an amenity-filled “Google-esque” campus.

A factory worker in Jackson, Minnesota uses Google Glass to help her on the assembly line.
Courtesy of AGCO

Google Glass didn’t do so well when it first launched, and is no longer in production for consumers, but the high-tech glasses are getting a second life in manufacturing.

One of the pioneers of this technology is an agricultural manufacturing company based in Duluth, Georgia called AGCO.

Minnesota Plant

At one of AGCO’s factories in Jackson, Minnesota, Heather Erickson is building an engine before it goes on to the assembly line.

Georgia Films Could Be On Oscar Stage

Jan 23, 2017
Eric Charbonneau / Invision for Twentieth Century Fox/Associated Press

It’s Oscars season. And this year, Georgia  may get its chance to shine. 

Augusta Cybersecurity Center Could Boost Metro Atlanta

Jan 20, 2017
Byron Small / Atlanta Business Chronicle

A proposed $50 million state-owned cybersecurity innovation center would be built in Augusta, nearly 150 miles from Atlanta’s rapidly growing cyber hub. Despite that distance, enthusiastic Atlanta-based cybersecurity industry executives say the halo effect of a state-backed  research and training hub will pay dividends for Atlanta’s cybersecurity sector by driving private investment to the sector, attracting cyber companies and nurturing home-grown startups.

Christina Marshall-Valdez is the CEO of Taelur, a web and mobile platform that connects plus-size women to clothes that fit them.
Alison Guillory / WABE

Downtown Atlanta is home to one of the first programs in the U.S. dedicated to funding and developing startups founded by black and Latino women.

It's called the BIG incubator and on Saturday, four teams are graduating from the three month bootcamp.

Taelur

Christina Marshall-Valdez is the founder of the start-up called Taelur, the French word for tailor. On her computer, she selects images of clothing, styles and body parts.

"The quiz is what's informing our artificial intelligence, so that's the engine for our site," she explained.

Courtesy of MailChimp

Conventional wisdom says for-profit employees work for paychecks, and nonprofit employees want to make a difference.

Two Atlanta companies have turned that wisdom on its head. They made philanthropy a part of their business model and found it has paid off.

MailChimp

Paulding County has approved a deal for a California-based company to lease the Atlanta Film Studio in Hiram, GA.
Lee Thomas / Ga. Department of Economic Development

The number of television series being made today is at an all-time high thanks to nontraditional platforms such as Netflix and Amazon, and the influx of new episodic programs in the Peach State is pumping millions into Georgia’s already exploding film and television industry.

According to this week’s Atlanta Business Chronicle, more than 430 scripted series were in development or on air in 2016, double the number of shows in 2010, according to the Washington Post.

Georgia Tech Looks To Expand In West Midtown

Jan 6, 2017
Alison Guillory / WABE

Georgia Tech wants to expand its campus into the West Midtown area of Atlanta. According to this week’s Atlanta Business Chronicle, Georgia Tech has issued a request for proposals (RFP) for the land at 14th Street and Howell Mill Road.

It’s looking for developers for an 11.5-acre site where hundreds of apartments, retail and office space, and a hotel could rise.

The Port of Savannah is poised to rapidly increase service to an arc of inland markets, from Atlanta to Memphis, to St. Louis, Chicago and the Ohio Valley. Key to expanding rail service is a $128M project linking Garden City Terminal’s two rail yards.
Courtesy of Stephen B. Morton/Georgia Ports Authority

The Georgia Ports Authority says one of its top priorities this year is building what it calls the "Mid-American Arc."

It's a $128 million project that would connect the CSX and Norfolk Southern rail yards leaving the Port of Savannah.

The arc project will double rail capacity in Savannah and improve its link to Atlanta and cities in the Midwest.

The Georgia Ports Authority said more than 3.4 million container units moved through the ports of Savannah and Brunswick in 2016.
Stephen B. Morton / Associated Press

Georgia's ports are on track to declare this year as their second busiest ever.

The increase in traffic volume was a surprise turnaround for the state.

With the exception of February, during the first half of this year both imports and exports moving through Georgia ports were down from last year.

Local research is confirming something we've all heard: getting a job is often about who you know.

Like many people, Atlanta resident Brenna Lakeson has seen the benefits of personal connections in her career.

Recently, when a friend was leaving her job at a center serving the homeless in Atlanta, she put in a good word for Lakeson. The two had gone to grad school together.

Lakeson ended up getting the spot, and, she said, it's worked out well.

Georgia Tech's new Coda building is expected to be complete in early 2019.
Courtesy of John Portman & Associates 2016

Georgia Tech's College of Computing Senior Associate Dean Charles Isbell says we're already looking at the future.

Construction has begun for the new Coda building, which will include the school's High Performance Computing center, in Midtown Atlanta.

"We're trying to construct a building that is as vertical as it is horizontal so that people are constantly moving up and down as well as left and right to interact with others," Isbell said.  

Gambling To Top Georgia's Legislative Agenda

Dec 16, 2016
Heather Ainsworth / Associated Press

Supporters of legalizing casino gambling and pari-mutuel betting on horse racing in Georgia will bring some new talking points to the 2017 General Assembly session they didn’t have in 2016. 

According to this week’s Atlanta Business Chronicle, one is in the form of a study released in August predicting the lottery-funded HOPE Scholarships program could run out of money by 2028 without a new revenue stream.

Atlanta Churches Ponder The Almighty Dollar

Dec 9, 2016
Courtesy of Atlanta Business Chronicle

Since 2014, churches in metro Atlanta have sold almost 530 acres for a total of $128.5 million, according to data from CoStar Group. This year alone, there have been 38 transactions, representing a total sales volume of $44.7 million.

The average sales price for a church and its land is near $1 million, according to CoStar Group.

According to this week’s Atlanta Business Chronicle, there is a growing trend of local churches that have sold or are considering selling property.

Atlanta Looking To Lure Foreign Business

Dec 9, 2016

The city of Atlanta is making a push to raise its international profile and lure more overseas companies. According to this week’s Atlanta Business Chronicle, Invest Atlanta, the city’s economic development arm, wants to hire a firm to pitch the city as a destination for foreign investment and corporate expansion.

This is the first time the city is seeking outside representation for business attraction from foreign markets.

David Goldman / Associated Press

Coca-Cola said Friday that CEO Muhtar Kent will step down as CEO next year and be replaced by Chief Operating Officer James Quincey.

The world's largest beverage maker has been under pressure to grow as people around the world drink less soda, including its flagship Coke. In October, the Atlanta company reported in October that its third-quarter profit fell 28 percent. Last year it rolled out a pricy milk drink called Fairlife that it says has more protein and less sugar than regular milk. The company also makes Sprite, Fanta and Dasani water.

Medical Tech Firm Moves Regional Hub To Atlanta

Dec 5, 2016

An Israel-based medical device maker has picked Atlanta for its North American headquarters. The company makes products that could help a growing number of people diagnosed with a sleep disorder.

Itamar Medical Inc. (TASE: ITMR) has developed the WatchPAT, a Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved device for the diagnosis of sleep apnea in the home environment. Sleep apnea is a medical condition that affects one in four people in the United States and is typically associated with cardiovascular disease.

Byron Small / Atlanta Business Chronicle

Fewer than four years from now, motorists encountering the interchange of Interstate 285 and Georgia State Route 400 will enjoy the convenience of flyover ramps and a slew of new lanes designed to speed up their trips.

Until then, it’s going to be yellow flashing lights, orange-and-white-striped sawhorses and little orange cones warning drivers to slow down for what promises to be the most disruptive highway construction project in the history of metro Atlanta.

Jeffrey Sprecher, chairman of the Intercontinental Exchange, New York Stock Exchange and 2017 chair-elect of the Metro Atlanta Chamber spoke about the importance of opposing discriminatory bills at the chambers annual meeting on Wednesday.
Tasnim Shamma / WABE

The Metro Atlanta Chamber said it will keep fighting any religious freedom legislation that gets introduced in Georgia's Legislature next year.

SunTrust Bank executive vice president and Metro Atlanta Chamber chair Jenner Wood said even the discussion of religious liberty bills like the one Governor Nathan Deal vetoed earlier this year, is not healthy for business.

Horse Industry Takes The Reins In Georgia’s Economy

Nov 28, 2016
Byron York / Atlanta Business Chronicle

Georgia’s equine industry is anything but a pony show — it has a $2.5 billion annual impact on the state’s economy, according to the Georgia Agricultural Commodity Commission for Equine.

Further, horses are the No. 9 commodity in the state with a value of more than $333 million, or about $279.8 million more than those famous Georgia peaches. That’s according to the 2014 Farm Gate Value Reports from the University of Georgia.

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Delta Air Lines' baggage claim area display banners saying bags are guaranteed to be delivered within 20 minutes. Delta Air Lines is the first to implement RFID luggage tags to track bags system-wide.
Tasnim Shamma / WABE

Your luggage tag may look ordinary, but if you’re flying with Delta Air Lines, it now has a microchip embedded inside. Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines is spending millions on new technology that allows its passengers to track their bags using a smartphone.

At Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the headquarters of Delta Air Lines, Cynthia Tookes of Lithonia, Georgia, who flies once a week to sing with her church choir, said she loves the new feature that allows her to track her bags on the Fly Delta app.

Shops And Restaurants Planned Near Turner Field

Nov 18, 2016
Courtesy of Atlanta Business Journal

Developers could bring new life to a collection of vacant and graffiti-covered buildings near Turner Field —helping fulfill a long-awaited promise to spark investment in neighborhoods around the ballpark.

According to this week’s Atlanta Business Chronicle, the team of private developers working with Georgia State University to redevelop 67 acres including Turner Field and its sprawling parking lots could acquire additional property in the Summerhill neighborhood of Atlanta.

Emory Plans Healthcare Expansion At Interstate-85

Nov 18, 2016
Courtesy of the Atlanta Business Chronicle

Two of Atlanta’s biggest hospital systems are set to create the city’s next healthcare hub at Interstate 85 and North Druid Hills Road.

According to this week’s Atlanta Business Chronicle, Emory University would develop a mixed-use campus on 70 acres at the south side of North Druid Hills in Executive Park with 2.3 million square feet of new development.

via Pixabay

When they’re not treating patients, holding office hours or performing surgeries, many doctors are working second jobs … as inventors. And according to a report in this week’s Atlanta Business Chronicle, it’s paying off.

Some of Atlanta’s oldest buildings are finding new life. The shortage of available space downtown has developers renovating existing office properties. According to this week’s Atlanta Business Chronicle, a 30-story office tower on downtown’s Woodruff Park is set to be converted into a mixed-use project that includes a new hotel.

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