(WGHP) — Several Triad city and town leaders say Toyota’s announcement of a battery plant on the Greensboro-Randolph Megasite will bring a boom to the region.
The plant is expected to employ more than 1,700 people in Liberty. Additionally, the North Carolina Department of Commerce is expected to discuss a separate project at Piedmont Triad International Airport that could also create more than 1,700 jobs at an unnamed aircraft manufacturer.
City and town officials said Tuesday that one of the biggest priorities is housing. Greensboro, High Point, Asheboro and Liberty are all within a 30-mile drive of the Greensboro-Randolph Megasite.
Liberty has a population of about 2,630 people. The town manager says the future battery plant could and other businesses could ultimately double that figure in the next ten years.
“I’ve had at least two already big project developers kind of reach out and ask questions about certain properties and where they might…put some apartment complexes. Just pre-planning,” Scott Kidd said.
Kidd explained if employees choose to relocate near the plant, they’ll need more housing and infrastructure improvements.
“Our downtown actually has two NC highways that run through the middle. And with big transfer truck traffic, that is not ideal for a small town, so starting that conversation with DOT of where would be the best place to maybe shift some of the roads around, maybe have some other ways in or out for the larger trucks that will come,” he said.
The town’s planning department hopes to have an updated land development plan ready in less than two months.
“We expect to grow with this announcement,” said Asheboro Mayor David Smith.
Smith told FOX8 employees who want affordability may choose to settle in Randolph County instead of larger nearby cities.
“We in Asheboro have an abundance of water and sewer capacity. We hope to benefit just like everybody else does from the housing boom,” he said.
That boom will underscore the need for Greensboro’s upcoming housing bond, according to Mayor Nancy Vaughan.
High Point Mayor Jay Wagner has his sights on the businesses that will follow Toyota to the Triad.
“We would love to attract as many of those to come to High Point as we can. We think we have a great city to sell and a great product to sell…so in the future, you don’t know exactly when that pebble hits the water how far those waves are going to go out,” he said.