The ground-breaking for the nonprofit-led knowledge-based Rowen community recently took place in Gwinnett County, Georgia, with Governor Brian Kemp in attendance. At the event, the project’s leaders from Rowen Foundation revealed the scope of the development. This massive mixed-use project could accommodate over 22 million square feet of lab, office, and civic spaces, including multi-family and retail components.
Kemp was pleased with the Rowen project, which he said will physically connect Georgia’s university students with relevant research work. The Governor also said the project would help uncover ideas of the future related to agriculture, environment, and medicine.
The governing members at Rowen Foundation consist of leaders from the University of Georgia, Georgia Tech, Emory University, Georgia Gwinnett College. But there are also others backing the Rowen community project for its economic and jobs-creation potential.
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Expectations for the Rowen community project
Upon completion, the project will produce 100,000 jobs and contribute about $10 billion annually to Georgia’s economy. The developer expects the Rowen community to bring researchers, entrepreneurs, and other innovators together in a bucolic setting. This also includes over 50 research and educational institutions across Georgia.
The design plans for the community feature a village-like setting, consisting of medium and low-density housing. However, the main construction is yet to begin, and the developer is currently working on building road infrastructure. This will provide SITES-certified complete streets, trails, sidewalks, and new roads to improve accessibility for residents.
Rowen community will be developed on the fringes of northeastern Atlanta, near the woodlands along Ga. Highway 316. According to the project leaders, this will be an expansive multi-decade buildout, which might take between 40 to 50 years. However, they said this timeline could change depending on market demand.
Gwinnett County Commission’d Chair Nicole Hendrickson, also spoke in favor of the Rowen community project. According to Hendrickson, this project became a reality due to the efforts of key partners over the past two years. Therefore, he was very excited to see the project finally getting underway.