Area Development
ZF Wind Power LLC celebrated the grand opening of its $98 million plant in Gainesville, GA, this week. Once operations commence in 2012, it will eventually hire up to 250 employees.

The German-based company will make 6-ton Atlas 1 wind turbine gearboxes at the new facility, located in the Gainesville Business Park.

"We're just pleased that Georgia and especially North Georgia...can be a part of the ongoing effort in the alternative energy movement," said Gov. Nathan Deal at the ribbon-cutting ceremony. "We think this facility here is another step forward for our state. We're becoming a state in which alternative energy providers are looking and locating."

According to the Washington, D.C.-based American Wind Energy Association, at least five manufacturing facilities in the state are manufacturing components for wind energy projects.