Future cyber hub in historic Augusta has companies eyeing nearby property

The redevelopment of Sibley Mill as a state-of-the-art Cyber Campus has sparked interest among big companies to consider expanding into Augusta's Historic District.

Augusta, Ga. (WJBF) – The redevelopment of Sibley Mill as a state-of-the-art Cyber Campus has sparked interest among big companies to consider expanding into Augusta’s Historic District.

The redevelopment of Sibley Mill as a state-of-the-art Cyber Campus has sparked interest among big companies to consider expanding into Augusta's Historic District.
The redevelopment of Sibley Mill as a state-of-the-art Cyber Campus has sparked interest among big companies to consider expanding into Augusta’s Historic District.

Currently, King Mill is leased to a company that has brought jobs back to Harrisburg, but that lease will be up soon. As a future cyber technology hub, some corporations have their eyes on the property.

The Augusta Canal Authority bought Sibley and King Mills in 2001 with the intention of preserving the historic buildings. Currently Standard Textile is renting a part of King Mill from the Augusta Canal Authority.

“If there’s a rumor that it’s being sold that’s not true,” Augusta Canal Authority Executive Director Dayton Sherrouse told WJBF News Channel 6.

The redevelopment of Sibley Mill as a state-of-the-art Cyber Campus has sparked interest among big companies to consider expanding into Augusta's Historic District.
The redevelopment of Sibley Mill as a Cyber Campus has sparked interest among big companies to consider expanding into Augusta’s Historic District.

The company’s lease was up in May, but the Augusta Canal Authority voted to extended it for another year with the option of two more 1-year extensions. Since the announcement, earlier this year, that Sibley Mill would be turned into a Data Center, the Augusta Canal Authority is getting several calls about the King Mill property.

“I think there’s going to be a lot of interest in it, particularly as Sibley Mill gets developed.” Sherrouse said.

The Executive Director says work on the first building of the future Data Center has already started. While a Cyber Center is a huge selling point for corporations, the location of this property also plays a big role in its appeal. “It’s a historic building. It’s got hydroelectric power associated with it,” he said.

Sherrouse says nothing is set in stone when it comes to the future of King Mill, but the cost of fixing the building would be left up to any potential developer. He tells WJBF News Channel 6 the revitalization projects that are happening all around the Harrisburg area will help greatly improve the once-thriving community and make King Mill more marketable.

“It’s just an exciting time to finally see some interest once again and putting people back to work,” said Sherrouse.

Sherrouse tells WJBF News Channel 6 that by the end of 2016 work on the first building of the Data Center could be finished. The hope is to get the company moved in by the start of 2017.

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