With over 1.6 million residents the Piedmont Triad in North Carolina has become named the 30th largest metropolitan area in the United States. Located between the Atlantic Ocean and the Appalachian Mountains, the three cities Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and High-Point bring a lot of different opportunities to the table. When The Piedmont Triad International Airport opened in 1982, it brought on quite a few changes.
Changes such as a building outbreak alongside the Interstate 40 corridor. This brought the 3 cities together, where they joined forces in attracting the best businesses. From the transportation infrastructure to the superb educational system, the vibrant area is a popular destination for those looking to retire or relocate to a booming economy.
While the Triad region is known mostly for its textile, furniture and tobacco industries, they are expanding at a vast rate with industries like logistics, distribution, biotechnology, and aviation and aerospace.
With a population of 240k, Greensboro is located in Guildford Co, with suburban area towns extending into Rockingham, Forsyth, and Davidson. It is the 3rd largest city in North Carolina and covers over 90 square miles. While textiles, furniture, and tobacco tend to dominate this economy, manufacturing has become quite popular. There are now over 500 factories stretched throughout. The diversity between the factories and the tobacco and furniture industry has allowed Greensboro to prosper.
Major companies in this area consist of United Guaranty Coro, and Jefferson- Pilot Corp. Manufactures such as Gilbarco, RF Micro Devices, and Analog Devices also find their home in Greensboro. However, Greensboro is even becoming popular internationally. Companies such as Twinings Tea of England, Fuji Foods of Japan and Volvo have all found a place in Greensboro.
Some may come to retire in Greensboro, many come for educational purposes. There are a handful of top-ranking schools in the area. Schools like UNC Greensboro, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University are all located in Greensboro.
These two schools are partnering to establish the Gateway University Research Park. This technology-based park will focus on life, biological and environmental sciences. This is targeted to create around 2,000 jobs for Greensboro.
High Point is well known for being the “Furniture Capital of the World”. The High Point Market is widely responsible for the economy. Holding the largest trade show in the world, furniture is the city’s most recognized business. The trade show is held twice a year and it brings in over 100 thousand buyers and exhibitors.Space is nearly 12 million square feet of showroom spaces, in 188 buildings, occupied by 2,300 exhibitors. High Point plays such a vital role in the furniture industry, market, and economy that the Triad has been able to corner the market on the specific segment of the global service economy.
Other businesses like pharmaceutical and logistics companies are starting to show up in the area as well. The highly favored High Point University is a private Liberal Arts University in North Carolina. It is affiliated with the United Methodist Church. It offers 47 majors, 51 minors, and12 graduate degree programs.
Winston- Salem is a medium-sized city built around the historical roots in Old Salem. Like the other cities in the Triad, Winston- Salem has a long history of textiles, furniture, and tobacco industries. However, the city is now starting to shift towards a more forward-thinking and educational industry. They are collaborating with private and education sectors to expand the economic base by investing in education, technology, and research.
Winston-Salem is trying to shift away from its old roots and start something new. This includes the Piedmont Triad Research Park of the PTRP. This is the largest urban life science research park in North Carolina and is planned to be the largest in the nation. The park is over 200 acres large and is used for research. It is maintained and operated by Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center as a science and technology-based development with a focus on Life Sciences.
The park is said to employ over 1,000 people and have a collective payroll of over 50 million dollars.