Company Bringing 70+ Jobs to Kinston's Global TransPark

Posted August 9, 2007 6:21 p.m. EDT
Updated August 9, 2007 8:59 p.m. EDT

— A new company is coming to Kinston’s Global TransPark and is bringing about 72 jobs to the area, company officials announced Thursday.

CEO Chris Garville is moving Commerce Overseas Corporation's headquarters from California to Kinston. The Global TransPark seemed to be a perfect fit for a company that offers parts-purchasing and delivery services to military aviation contractors.

“Terrific location – the airport facility here is just fantastic,” Garville said.

More than $140 million in state and federal funds have been spent on the GTP since 1991. Early studies predicted it would create more than 50,000 jobs and pump billions of dollars into eastern North Carolina's economy.

Today, there are 12 companies employing a few hundred. The GTP needs more companies, such as Garville’s, to bring more jobs.

“We have plenty of room here for companies to locate,” said Gene Conti, GTP Authority vice president. “We have a 300-acre industrial park hardly filled up at all.”

Some critics say the TransPark is a waste of money.

“I think part of the TransPark’s problem has been over-hyping its promise, and we’re building it one step at a time,” Conti said.

Doug Byrd with the State Commerce Department said his agency is not discouraged by the GTP's slow growth.

“The Research Triangle Park sat there for a long time before it began to grow,” Byrd said. “Things are beginning to come together down here.”

Garville said he knows the TransPark's history and has no reservations about moving his company here.

“This is a, quote unquote, sleeping giant from the standpoint that it's a fantastic facility,” he said. “And I just think it’s undiscovered.”

The GTP will receive $1.6 million in state funding in next year's budget. The TransPark authority said that number has been the same for several years. The long-term goal is to have the facility stand on its own through tenant funding.