Population grew by 87,109 over the last 5 years and is projected to grow by 69,002 over the next 5 years.
Jobs grew by 72,300 over the last 5 years and are projected to grow by 47,577 over the next 5 years.
Region’s average earnings are $6.6K below the national average.
Below national average cost of living.
Where we’re located
SEGA Key Industries
Southeast Georgia has direct access to all major modes of transportation and is a place where people want to live due to the great quality of life, but the biggest asset the Region offers businesses is a great workforce.View All
Tradewinds Industrial Park offers 687 acres with access to I-95 via a one mile drive over Hwy 99 to a completely undeveloped interchange, one of the few remaining on I 95. This industrial park is an opportunity to acquire a highly visible location (I-95) that is located perfectly in between the Port of Savannah and Jacksonville.
This 2,000 acre Industrial Site is located at the Brunswick Golden Isles (BQK) Airport and is available for development and will give direct access to the runway.
A 355 Acre Industrial Site with GRAD Certification located 12 Miles from Brunswick Golden Isles Airport, 20 Miles from the Port of Brunswick and 1 Mile from Interstate 95.
The Port of St. Marys Industrial and Logistics Center 425 developable acres with around 4,000 linear feet of waterfront for development into a dynamic, multi-use port, industrial and logistics center. Strategically located 8 miles from the open ocean and serviced by an active short-line railroad, 10 miles to major Class-1 railroad CSX.
Art Lucas, from left, former state Sen. Ed Perry, Darien Mayor Bubba Hodge and Chris Harper, chairman of the McIntosh County Industrial Development Authority, dump shovelfuls of earth on the grounds of Lucas’ Oaks on the River condo and hotel development in Darien. Article & Photo courtesy of The Brunswick News
DARIEN — Art Lucas called Wednesday a “bluebird day’’ as he led a ceremonial ground-breaking for a three-story condominium complex, a 40-plus room boutique hotel and a stand-alone restaurant all overlooking the Darien River.
Lucas stood before a mixed backdrop of shrimpboat rigging, sailboat masts, billowing wild rice and an excavator as he announced that construction would begin soon on Oaks on the River.
Work will begin first on the dozen 2,200-square-foot condominiums on the eastern end of the project that will stretch along the waterfront from the former George’s Boat Works to U.S. 17.
Standing on the bare, compacted building site, Lucas said that contractors will soon begin pouring concrete and that he is hopeful that his company, Lucas Properties, will soon strike a deal with a company to build a restaurant on the opposite end of the site. Lucas had said earlier he had an agreement but the would-be restaurant owner’s financing fell through and the deal was canceled.
If he can find another restaurant partner, the eatery at the former county development authority offices and the high-end boutique hotel will be built in the first phase and the hotel will go up during the second, Lucas said.
“Kind of a destination hotel,’’ that, Lucas said, he hopes will attract bicyclists and birders.
“It’s amazing how many birdwatchers there are in the world,’’ and many come to the Georgia coast to spot birds, he said.
McIntosh County has aggressively developed its bicycle trails to accomodate long rides including a path that stretches along Fort King George Road, where Oaks by the River is located, north to the historic Ridge community on Georgia 99.
Dawn Malin, president and CEO of the McIntosh County Industrial Development Authority, called it “a rooftop project. With rooftop projects come jobs.”
Development Authority Chairman Chris Harper said he believes the project will, as Lucas predicted, be a draw to the county.
For Lucas, who grew up in McIntosh County, Oaks by the River is a homecoming of sorts. He had spent 38 years in Atlanta before coming back to the coast.
“I’m just glad to be back here and get involved in this community again,’’ he said.
He announced the project in spring of 2018 and, for all the positive economic impact it promised, ran into immediate opposition.
“We got involved with the oak tree,’’ he said.
The oak is an enormous live oak that has grown for many decades out of a tabby wall near the northern border of Lucas’ property. Lucas believed the condominiums would be far enough away from what has become the city’s signature oak that it wouldn’t be harmed. He had the assurances of an arborist that the oak would be fine, but he consulted a second who said the tree’s roots extended farther than thought.
A lot has already changed on the waterfront. All but two shrimpboats have been moved from the docks in front of the hotel property and, once work is completed on a possibly century-old yacht, George’s Boat Yard will also be gone.
Lucas estimated the total cost of the project at around $18 million but said it’s still far too early to put a firm number on it.
Article & Photo courtesy of The Brunswick News
Mel Baxter is the new Executive Director of Brantley County Development Authority
Former Athens-Clarke County Economic Development Department head bringing expertise to Brunswick & Glynn County Development Authority.
Dawn Malin is the new Executive Director of McIntosh County Industrial Development Authority.
Coastal Pines Technical College to offer programs for basic marine engine technician and basic marine servicing technician.