Team Gemini founding partner Doug Haughn said it almost feels like fate brought him back to Grove City.
Not only did Haughn, 48, grow up in Grove City and graduate from Grove City High School in 1982, a part of it still carries his namesake.
His great-grandfather was Sam Haughn, who owned a farm on what is now known as Haughn Road. Haughn's father Gerald Haughn and grandfather Leo Haughn had worked on it.
"When I grew up, the farm had already been sold into pieces," he said. "It's exciting to come back home to not only do a a big project here but also on the old family farm."
Haughn has lived in Florida for the past 27 years working in business development, developing energy efficient construction and renovations for commercial and residential projects.
"We started off to design a sustainable, renewable cluster of technologies that wasn't reliable on government funding and to have multiple revenue streams to reduce risks," he said, referring to initial plans for the new recycling facility. "I travelled to the Midwest looking for a location."
It was Columbus 20/20, the regional private-public economic development partnership, that introduced Team Gemini and its partner companies to the Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio, Haughn said.
"We modified the plans to fit the needs of SWACO," he said. "It's just ironic it led me back to farming."
In addition to generating clean power, recycling resources in the refuse stream and developing a sustainable industrial park, one of the components that will make the project work is the greenhouses.
"The technologies we're using are proven technologies," he said. "They've just never been brought together before."