Funding obtained for the GPTC transport training center in Lithonia

COVINGTON, Ga. — Plans to renovate and build the Georgia Piedmont Technical College Regional Transportation Training Center will soon materialize after funding was recently secured from various government agencies.

The Regional Transportation Training Center is expected to be instrumental in training high-demand skilled workers for the transportation industry, including commercial truck drivers, logistics and distribution workers. The future facility will replace the deteriorating modular teaching space and will also allow GPTC to provide learning space for adult education students pursuing their high school equivalency or studying English as a language. second.

Work on the Lithonia Training Center has an estimated price tag of $11.9 million, according to a news release, but will now be fully covered thanks to the work of federal, state and DeKalb County officials.

“Having the federal, state and local governments invest in this project is a huge win for Georgia Piedmont Technical College, its students, and its mission to provide an educated workforce,” said GPTC President Tavarez. Holston. “We invite anyone interested in this industry to connect with us to create an ecosystem like this region has never seen.”

The first $6.9 million was secured in May 2021 when the state of Georgia approved the amount in its 2022 budget.

In March 2022, Congressman Hank Johnson, D-Ga., confirmed $1 million more in federal funding.

In a congratulatory letter to Holston, Johnson wrote, “It gives me absolute pleasure to announce that the $1 million for the Georgia Piedmont Technical College Regional Transportation Center is one of eight funding submissions from community projects in Georgia’s 4th congressional district that should become law now. that the House and Senate both passed the omnibus appropriations legislation for the fiscal year (2022)”.

President Joe Biden has since signed the legislation. Federal funds are reserved only for projects that directly impact “underserved areas and promote economic development” in the Fourth Ward.

In April, an additional $4 million to distribute over the next two years was secured through a grant and memorandum of understanding with the DeKalb County Board of Commissioners.

“On behalf of the Board of Commissioners and residents of DeKalb County, congratulations to GPTC on securing funding for the new Transportation Training Center,” said DeKalb CEO Michael Thurmond. “A well-trained workforce is an essential part of DeKalb’s transportation infrastructure that will support the county’s economic growth and prosperity.

The new building is expected to be approximately 18,000 square feet. The project also includes the renovation of an existing RTTC building, which measures approximately 5,000 square feet. Georgia Piedmont officials and other partner agencies plan to begin in late summer or early fall 2022 with students and industry partners occupying the new center sometime in 2024.

Milton S. Rodgers