Barnes Welcomes Daimler Chrysler

Gov. Barnes makes the announcement.
Gov. Barnes makes the announcement.

Governor Roy Barnes makes it official: Daimler Chrysler's bringing thousands of new jobs to Pooler next year. In an announcement broadcast live on WTOC at 3pm today, the governor announced that Daimler Chrysler will be building its new van plant in the Coastal Empire. Barnes said it'll have a huge positive impact on Chatham County.

"I am ready to welcome Daimler Chrysler to Chatham County," said Barnes. "It means jobs. At least 3,300 employed directly by the company, and another 700 will be hired and employed by suppliers.

"Today signifies the largest economic development opportunity in our history, and I'm proud that it could be in Chatham County," Barnes added.

Not only will the plant bring 4,000 jobs to the area, but it will also impact many of the local businesses. It's like a domino effect, and Daimler Chrysler is the very first domino that gets all the rest going. Not only will there be a new big business in town, but it will give a big boost to other businesses.

Getting her business off the ground was tough at first for Rosa Campbell, but now after 18 months, her Italian restaurant is doing pretty well. So well, that now she's in the process of making room for more. And it's a good thing. With the plant coming to town, Campbell admits she'll probably need the extra space.

"We're expanding and that's why we're hoping it's going to do good for us," she said.

And she's not the only one with high hopes. With nearly 4,000 jobs coming to the area, all those people will need a place to live, so home builders are just as happy. Then there are those selling the homes.

"With our livelihood depending on people buying and selling homes, I think this might be a good thing," Tracey Grassi of Coldwell-Banker Reality told us.

Grassi has been involved with real estate for nearly 20 years. She says Daimler Chrysler is nothing but good news.

"It creates a flurry of activity and interest in the real estate market and that coming on top of the low interest rates at the time--it's just like pandemonium," she said.

Pandemonium for several different businesses, and even though the impact is several years away, those who will see the effects are anxiously waiting.

"The more people who come into Pooler, the more business we get," noted Campbell.

Construction on the new plant is set for July of this coming year and the plant at the earliest will be completed in 2005.

Reported by: Dmitra Denmark