Triangle North, formerly known as the Kerr-Tar Hub, is an economic development partnership between four counties north of the Research Triangle Park (including Granville, Vance, Franklin and Warren). The partnership involves local governments sharing the costs to develop sites across the region and, when new companies are attracted to one of the sites, sharing the tax revenues. The Kerr-Tar Regional Council of Governments manages operations and marketing for Triangle North.
On April 5, Triangle North announced that:
“U.S. Growers Direct (USGD), a commodities marketing and distribution company, plans to locate a new global distribution center at Triangle North Franklin business park in Louisburg. The $3.75 million, 100,000-square-foot facility will be built by Golden Leaf Properties, a Franklin County development company, on 18 acres at Triangle North Franklin. USGD, Louisburg will use the space to receive agricultural products from farmers across the southeastern United States and ship them to customers in other countries.”
Triangle North came into being following a 2003 report from the Center for Competitive Economies at UNC Chapel Hill recommending the development of mini-hubs in the regions surrounding the Research Triangle Park. UNC researchers suggested that mini-hubs, or enhanced technology parks geared towards mid-tech businesses, would benefit peripheral rural counties by attracting businesses that needed to be near the Research Triangle, but not in it. The mini-hub was envisioned as a network of sites that would require a more substantial investment than any single community could provide. Inter-local cost and revenue sharing arrangements between local government partners were developed to make the concept possible.
Will Lambe authored the NC Rural Center report, Small Towns, Big Ideas, and he served as Director of the Community and Economic Development Program at the School of Government from 2009 to 2014.