Editorial: Progress feeds Augusta’s fun factor

Editorial: Progress feeds Augusta’s fun factor

More fun seems to be finding Augusta.

Frankly, we grew sick and tired long ago of critics who groused about how the metro area offered so little to do when it came to leisure time. Why doesn’t Augusta have this store or that restaurant?

That grumbling came to a head in 2011 when then-Georgia Health Sciences University President Dr. Ricardo Azziz spoke to a local civic club and offered his needling assessment of Augusta: The city lacked a “cool factor” to attract recruits to the school’s growing medical research sector.

Now, several years later, a cool front is settling over the Augusta area – but for many reasons that Azziz didn’t see coming.

Nobody saw cyber coming to Augusta in 2011. It wasn’t until 2013 that the U.S. Army announced the creation of a Cyber Center of Excellence at Fort Gordon, and later that the fort would be the new location for the Army’s recently formed Cyber Command.

As soon as Augusta’s business and academic communities saw tremendous growth potential on the horizon, they started preparing. Now, construction projects are busily underway at Fort Gordon and the Georgia Cyber Center downtown is welcoming both tenants and students.

But when others outside the Augusta area saw growth coming, they wanted in, too.

And in they came. They’re still coming. Opportunists spotting profit potential want to make sure the newest, and younger, additions to the area’s population can choose from more retail and leisure options.

Cooler options.

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