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Atmos Energy plans to build new office

 

Atmos Energy, its Columbus office shown here, is working on consolidating its three Golden Triangle offices into one central location by spring.

Atmos Energy, its Columbus office shown here, is working on consolidating its three Golden Triangle offices into one central location by spring. Photo by: Deanna Robinson/Dispatch Staff

 

Alex Holloway

 

 

Atmos Energy's three Golden Triangle offices are hoping to move into a new, centralized location next year. 

 

Michelle Whittle, operations manager for Atmos' "District 45," which includes the three counties of the Golden Triangle, along with Monroe County and Tupelo, said Atmos is finalizing funding for the new office, which will be located next to Wade Construction on South Frontage Road, a few miles west of Columbus. 

 

"Our plans are for us to begin construction on our new office hopefully by spring," Whittle said. "We most likely will sell the other three facilities." 

 

Atmos has offices in Columbus, Starkville and West Point, with the Columbus office being the largest of the three. Whittle said the new office will be about the size of the Columbus office, which was originally built for about 50 people. 

 

The new location will serve Clay, Lowndes and Oktibbeha counties. Whittle said the more centralized location will better allow Atmos to serve the region, as some of the need for an office in each city has been reduced due to technological advancements. 

 

"We're influenced, like everyone else, by technology," Whittle said. "Guys don't have to come up to the office every morning to get their first order. Now we have guys that live in Columbus and their first order might be in West Point." 

 

Whittle said Atmos might have preferred a location more centrally-located between the three communities, such as Mayhew. However, she said that area lacks the infrastructure to make it a viable choice. She also noted the area around Golden Triangle Regional Airport -- located at the Lowndes County Industrial Park and centrally located -- is heavily industry-focused, while Atmos is a commercial enterprise. 

 

The new office will be similar to one Atmos built in Grenada two years ago, Whittle said. She said it's also geared more toward the company's current needs than its older offices. 

 

"We used to carry merchandise in the front of the Columbus and Starkville offices," she said. "We built those offices with showroom floors where we could put stoves and heaters and things like that to display. We no longer need all that open space. The new office will better meet all our current needs." 

 

Whittle said she hopes to know a more firm timeline for the project by the start of 2018. Once the new building is finished, all of the staff from the current offices will go to it. 

 

"All of us will move," she said. "Every one of us -- we have about 28 employees. We all will begin reporting to the new office. We're all excited about it. It's going to be really nice."

 

 

 

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