About the Southeast Tennessee Region


southeast_tn_regionSoutheast Tennessee is known for breathtaking natural beauty, bountiful opportunities for outdoor fun and distinct business advantages that make our region one of the most desirable in the nation. Through a remarkable sense of community spirit and a process of public-private partnerships, our citizens have made their home a hub for successful business enterprise, a regional tourism center and a gracious place to live.

Over the past few years, the Greater Chattanooga region has experienced tremendous economic development with the $4 billion investments of Volkswagen Group of America, Alstom, Wacker Polysilicon USA and IVS into this area.  The Electric Power Board also recently completed the nation’s largest 100 percent fiber optic network, which gives all homes and businesses within a 600 square mile area the option of accessing up to 1 Gbps speeds and provides a new competitive edge for the region to attract significant tech industry.

These growth pressures not only exacerbate existing environmental, infrastructure and fiscal issues, but also they create new ones. While area residents and leaders remain excited about the rapid growth of the region, concerns have emerged over preserving the high quality of life and natural beauty of the Southeast region.

The northeast part of Alabama and the Northwest corner of Georgia share many of the same amenities and the impacts of this recent growth.  Recognizing that we travel across state lines for jobs, depend on the same interstates, and share the same sources of drinking water, the region has decided to come together to chart a course for our shared future.

The tri-state area is leading the joint Thrive 2055 effort to expand Chattanooga’s success to a 17-county multi-state region. These efforts are intended to build upon the city’s regional impact and opportunities. Chattanooga’s successful community-based goal setting and implementation process, supported by the Vision 2000 community involvement project, has transformed a community with serious environmental and economic problems into a national leader in sustainability, diversified regional economic development, and community redevelopment. As a result, the Southeast Tennessee Region is on the forefront of economic development and prosperity.


Southeast Tennessee Development District Special Project Director Leigh McClure
discusses regionalism, sustainability, and the role of the Tennessee Regions’ Roundtable