BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC) announced Wednesday that IBM will be locating a new technology center in downtown Baton Rouge that will "provide software development and software maintenance services."
This project is expected to create 800 direct jobs and 500 indirect jobs. According to IBM, the 800 jobs will be created over the next four years. The complex is being built on the old Advocate newspaper site bordered by Main, North, Lafayette Street and River Road
The $55 million investment will be made to construct a new mixed-use building downtown, including an eight-story office tower that will be the home of a new IBM Domestic Delivery Center, an 11-story residential building with 95 river-view apartments and nine town homes.
The new complex will be the first high-rise riverfront residential and office buildings in Downtown Baton Rouge in over half a century. In a news release sent out by BRAC, "The new building will change the skyline of Baton Rouge and energize riverfront and downtown development already in progress."
The software center will be eight stories and encompass more than 220,000 sq. feet of mixed-use office space. The two towers will be connected by a 24,000 square foot private terrace overlooking the Mississippi River. Total square foot of the entire multi-use complex is 455,000 square feet.
The office tower is scheduled for completion by spring 2015 with the residential complex following in the summer.
The State of Louisiana, City of Baton Rouge/East Baton Rouge Parish are partnering to build the $30.5 million, eight-story office building. IBM will take up the entire office building with software engineers and related staff. The Wilbur Marvin Foundation will own the building and collect no rent for at least 15 years, only a fee from the state and IBM to cover operating costs. There will also be parking for 300 vehicles.
According to the Associated Press, "the project involves about $74 million in public money over 12 years. Louisiana Economic Development is offering $29.5 million over 12 years - including $1.5 million in local money - for workforce costs and facility operation. State, federal and city money will put up a $30.5 million office building on the old Advocate newspaper site. It's to be developed by the Baton Rouge Area Foundation's real estate trust. The state is also providing $14 million over 10 years to increase the number of computer science graduates in Louisiana. At least 65 percent will expand Louisiana State University's computer science division."
All apartments in the residential tower will have balconies overlooking the Mississippi River and will range in size from approximately 500-1000 square feet. Rents have not been set. There will be a private fitness center for IBM employees and the residents. CPRT will seek private financing for the residential tower, the town homes and 132 parking spaces.
The project, in the planning stages since fall of 2012, began with a generous gift of a parcel of land to the Baton Rouge Area Foundation from the Manship Family.
If you are interested in applying for a job at IBM Baton Rouge, go to http://ibmlouisiana.com/jobs/.
An IBM Baton Rouge Job Fair targeting experienced professionals and recent grads has been scheduled for Tuesday, April 23, 2013 from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. It will be hosted at the Baton Rouge Marriott located at 5500 Hilton Avenue in Baton Rouge. Click here if you would like to register to attend the Job Fair.