Friday, April 5, 2019
Cutting the ribbon at the TechWorks of Gaston grand opening today were (from left) Liz Crabill, deputy assistant secretary of commerce, for the state of North Carolina, TechWorks Executive Director Terry Cox, Gaston Innovation Group Board Chair Dr. Stephen Hannon, Gaston County Commission Chairman Tracy Philbeck, and N.C. Sen. Kathy Harrington. Beside them (at left) are Belmont Mayor Charlie Martin and Montcross Area Chamber President Ted Hall. At right, are Belmont City Manager Adrian Miller and Gaston Regional Chamber CEO Steve D'Avria.
Four years of work took TechWorks from a vision to reality
More than four years of hard work, long meetings and fundraising paid off in a big way for Gaston County today when the TechWorks innovation and technology center opened in downtown Belmont.
he center is furnished and ready to provide work space to attract and support present and future technology entrepreneurs and provide technical training to boost the job skills of people of all ages.
More than 200 were on hand for a ribbon cutting and program and to see the beautifully renovated 14,000-square-foot space in a former textile building at 52A Ervin Street. Congressman Patrick McHenry spoke as did Liz Crabill of the N.C. Department of Commerce, N.C. Sen. Kathy Harrington, County Commission Chairman Tracy Philbeck and Belmont Mayor Charlie Martin. N.C. Rep. John Torbett also attended. TechWorks Board Chairman Dr. Stephen Hannon and Executive Director Terry Cox cut the ribbon assisted by a robot built by local high school students, which delivered the scissors.
More than $2 million from the state, Gaston County, Belmont and corporate and foundation grants have brought TechWorks from a concept to reality. TechWorks already has made it possible for gigabit speed internet service in Belmont provided by Open Broadband, and for free public Wi-Fi downtown. Plans are being developed to spread the service to other cities and towns across the county.
This is the Iced Java robotics team from Mountain Island Charter, which built the robot that delivered a pair of 18-inch scissors for the ribbon cutting photo today. In the small photo above, Terry Cox and others react as the robot goes into spin cycle mode in celebration of the successful ribbon cutting.