SEDA Puts Property Info Online - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

06/09/05

SEDA Puts Property Info Online

Merklinger demonstrates the database. Merklinger demonstrates the database.

How's the elbow room where you work? If your company's growing, it might be time to find more space. But it can take lots of time and lots of money to find a new home for a business.

Just ask Savannah's Stage Front Presentation Systems. The company needs a lot of space for the gear and people required to set up events like May's James Brown concert in Forsyth Park.

"For the James Brown concert, we did audio, video and all of the staging equipment," explained the company's Steve Stephens.

A little over a year ago, Stage Front decided it needed to relocate. It needed a facility about twice the size of what it had downtown.

The problem is they had to work with several individual realtors. There was no single source for information on available property. It took them about half a year to find their new 22,500-square-foot facility on Savannah's west side.

Now something new is making it easier for business moving across town or across the country: an online database of all available property in the county.

"The communities that don't have this information will be left behind, quite candidly," said Jeremy Merklinger with the Savannah Economic Development Authority.

The information is everything a business needs to know about available commercial property, gathered by SEDA online.

Why? "One, the fact that we're looking to create jobs," said Merklinger. "Two, to increase the amount of investment within Chatham County, and those two components increase the overall quality of life. Make Savannah a place where, you know, you can live well and prosper."

"Undoubtedly, any new business that comes into town is a potential new customer for us," said Stage Front's Stephens. "So I think SEDA's tool to help attract and support those quality businesses as they come to town affects the whole area's economy positively."

And something Stage Front could have used a year ago, when the company was looking for a new home.

The system is pretty detailed. You can search by square footage required, distance to the airport, and more.

SEDA provides this service online to keep our area competitive. They say companies looking for new places to open up shop check online first, and if they don't find what they're looking for online, they often cut that city off their list.

More information online:

www.seda.org

Reported by: Charles Gray, cgray@wtoc.com

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