College campus and retail development set for Alabama Highway site in Catoosa County
About 50 acres of Catoosa County-owned property will soon become home for a Georgia Northwestern Technical Community College satellite campus as well as a mixed-use commercial development.
County attorney Chad Young reported during the Tuesday, May 21, county commission meeting that the property’s sale had been approved and recommended the previous week by the Catoosa County Economic Development Authority.
Young said the college, which for several years has been in negotiations to build a satellite campus in Catoosa County, will occupy roughly 38 acres on the western portion of the property on Alabama Highway (Ga. 151), while a private developer has plans for mixed retail space on about 12 acres fronting the highway.
The sale is contingent on the county providing an entrance from the highway, constructing a road through the property, and adding an exit onto Holcomb Road. The county, the city of Ringgold and the local utility district are also being asked to provide sewer and water service to the site, Young said.
The Georgia Department of Transportation last year agreed to install a traffic signal and turn lane at Holcomb Road when the highway is widened to four lanes.
Young said preliminary estimates call for the county-provided infrastructure improvements to cost about $800,000.
“The purchase price will be sufficient to pay off the property (purchased by the EDA) and provide these improvements,” he said.
County commission chairman Keith Greene said both these developments should provide long-term benefits to the county.
“We’ll essentially break even (recovering the land’s purchase price) and end up with a commercial development that is estimated to generate about $10 million in annual sales,” he said. “And the college will help in attracting other development to the county.”