Both Greensboro and Durham had major economic development announcements this week.
Tuesday, March 16, Greensboro announced that Syngenta was not leaving, and Thursday, March 18, Durham announced that it had been chosen as the site of a new Google engineering hub.
Greensboro offered Syngenta about $1.7 million, matched by Guilford County, to entice the company not to take its 650 employees at an average wage of $107,000 per year somewhere else. This week Syngenta announced it would be spending about $68 million to build a new office building and renovate existing buildings on its campus on Swing Road in Greensboro.
Mayor Nancy Vaughan said she was “thrilled” that Syngenta had decided to remain and expand in Greensboro.
The leadership in Durham on Thursday expressed similar delight following the announcement that Google had chosen Durham as the site for a new cloud engineering hub that will eventually provide jobs for more than 1,000 people. The plan calls for Google to lease space in downtown Durham until it finds a permanent location. The Google networking and storage engineering function will initially hire 110 employees and is projected to be at 150 employees by the end of the year.
The Durham operation is expected to become one of Google’s top five engineering hubs in the country according to the News & Observer.
Google did not request incentives for this major economic development project in Durham. Google has had a small presence in the Triangle area for years and currently employs about 600 people across North Carolina.
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper and Durham Mayor Steve Schewel released a video announcement welcoming Google to Durham.
The Durham expansion is part of a $7 billion investment Google is making in offices and data centers across the country that will create 10,000 new full-time jobs this year according to a Google press release.
So, Greensboro, North Carolina’s third largest city, is celebrating not losing 650 high paying jobs and Durham, North Carolina’s fourth largest city is celebrating 1,000 new high paying jobs.