EDI's New Home at Technology Square Provides New Opportunities

At Technology Square, Georgia Tech's new multi-building complex in Midtown Atlanta, EDI occupies about 21,000 square feet on three floors at 760 Spring Street, nearly half of the 48,500-square-foot, four-story building. Although the new space is somewhat smaller than EDI's former campus location, "being at Technology Square presents a myriad of new opportunities," said Rick Duke, EDI's director.

One of Georgia Tech's most active outreach groups, EDI provides technology-driven solutions to help Georgia companies become more competitive and Georgia communities address economic growth issues. Last year EDI helped some 1,300 companies around the state with strategic-management and technical assistance issues. Since 2000 EDI has provided economic development assistance in 153 of Georgia's 159 counties.

"We're the type of organization that should have constituents and customers visiting us on a regular basis, however, our former location stifled us," Duke said, referring to EDI's old offices in the O'Keefe Building on the northeast side of campus. "There, we only have a couple of visitors a day," Duke said. "But in our new space, our goal is to have 100 visitors a day - about 25,000 a year."

At Technology Square, EDI will be next to the new Georgia Tech Hotel and Conference Center, making it easy for out-of-town visitors to reach EDI's offices. For example, the Georgia Economic Developers Association (GEDA) will hold its monthly meeting in the hotel this October - an event attracting more than 300 economic developers from around the state.

Besides being more accessible to the community, EDI's new headquarters puts it closer to key Georgia Tech partners:

* The Advanced Technology Development Center (ATDC), Georgia Tech's incubator for technology startups - and EDI's sister organization. In August, ATDC will move its headquarters to Centergy One, a 12-story building on Fifth Street across the street from Technology Square.

* The Global Learning Center, a new university facility devoted to corporate meetings, training programs and other forms of continuing education. EDI hosts classes on a wide variety of topics, such as lean manufacturing, environmental management and international standards. In fact, EDI conducted more programs last year than any group on campus, was second in the number of program participants and third in revenues, according to statistics from Georgia Tech's Professional Education Group.

* The Center for Quality Growth and Regional Development, part of the College of Architecture's City Planning Program, will be housed with EDI at Technology Square. "The center deals with sustainable growth and smart growth, which goes hand in hand with what we do," Duke said.

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