ATLANTA-FedEx Ground, the small-package ground delivery unit of locally based FedEx Corp., has selected a 75-acre site in suburban Kennesaw for the construction of a 247,000-sf distribution center expected to open by summer 2006 with a workforce of 475 employees. The site is 10 miles north of Downtown in Cobb County, at Old Cobb Highway and Airport Road.

Area construction industry sources tell the FedEx automated terminal can’t be built for less than $200 per sf or about $50 million total. The facility will be able to handle 15,000 packages per hour. FedEx plans to expand the property to 322,000-sf by 2010. At that time, the center will be able to process 30,000 packages with a projected workforce of 800.

Gov. Sonny Perdue, who made the announcement, calls Georgia “a center of business, commerce and distribution for the United States and the world.” Perdue adds, “Our integrated transportation system and our state’s pro-business attitude provide the foundation on which companies like FedEx Ground can succeed.”

Georgia Department of Economic Development commissioner Craig Lesser says the new distribution center site is “close to FedEx Ground’s customers, major highways and a strong local labor pool.” He adds, “Georgia has once again proven that it has the pieces in place to drive business.”

FedEx currently operates a distribution center in suburban Ellenwood where the company invested $22 million in recent renovations and retrofittings. FedEX also has pickup and delivery terminals in Marietta and Norcross. The carrier has a total workforce of 1,400 in the metro area.

The new facility is part of the company’s $1.8-billion network expansion plan that covers the construction of nine new hubs, the expansion of 30 existing hubs and the relocation of 290 pickup and delivery terminals. The nationwide expansion is expected to double the company’s average daily hub volume package capacity to 5.3 million packages by the end of fiscal 2010, according to company sources.

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