This Northwest Georgia community, bisected by Interstate 75, has long been proclaimed the “Carpet Capital of the World” in honor of the industry that has dominated the region for decades. The dangers of being a one-industry town became all too apparent when the housing market collapsed and the soaring demand for carpets and floor coverings dried up. Being an industrial capital didn’t seem like such an honor once all those jobs started to disappear along with the markets that feed them.
“We had the building bubble burst, and it affected all sorts of building replacements, new home sales and all that,” observes County Commission Chairman Mike Babb. “That affected carpet mills, which affects us tremendously – not just in Whitfield County, but all of northwest Georgia.”
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