Gainesville local economy is 'healthy' and growing

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GAINESVILLE, TEXAS -- Roofing manufacturer GAF is dropping $24 million dollars to add 50 jobs and 200,000 square feet to their building off Corporate Drive.

"They've been here a number of years and they've always been a great q uality employer. Big building, a lot of new equipment and the jobs are quality jobs, I mean, they pay very well. So just a great addition to our economy here in Gainesville," Gainesville Economic Development Director Kent Sharp said.

This announcement is just the latest good news for Gainesville, a city that's leading the area in economic health.

"Just in the last 24 months alone, we've added over a thousand manufacturing jobs to our local economy," Sharp said.

Texas Workforce Commission numbers show that Cooke County has comparatively high employment, with just a 5 percent unemployment rate.

But the city's biggest feat?

"Our sales tax for this twelve months was up 78 percent versus last year. The other cities I compared, I think the highest was 13-14 percent. I compared Gainesville to Frisco, McKinney, Lewisville, Denton, Sherman, Denison and Decatur," Sharp said.

This economic success is bringing more people to Gainesville, leading to a lack of available housing.

"Our housing market is very tight here," Sharp said.

But although Gainesville is booming, Kent Sharp says they won't see the massive growth spurt that cities like Frisco and McKinney have.

"I think what we want is just steady, quality, stable growth. You know, if we could go from 16-17,000 inside the city limits of Gainesville, to 25,000 over the next ten years, that'd be phenomenal," Sharp said.

Construction on the GAF expansion should be finished in about a year.

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