The following development organizations are recipients of Expansion Solutions Magazine’s 2009 Awards of Excellence in the *** Warehouse/Distribution*** industry category. These awards recognize organizations who have demonstrated exceptional progress and potential in the development of their areas -- by successfully recruiting, retaining and growing businesses. The winners below are listed in alphabetical order and are reflective of our top 5 picks.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Grand Island Area Economic Development Corporation
Grand Island, NE
One of the best locations for a warehouse/distribution center, Grand Island (Nebraska) is definitely worth a closer look. This area is strategically located in the middle of the country and can serve North America, Canada, and Mexico. No other community in Nebraska offers such a well-connected network of highways to all points in the state. This grid of highways, like the spokes of a wheel, can provide the most efficient commuting time to the entire state from any location. Serving Grand Island directly are Interstate 80, U.S. Highways 30, 34 and 281 and Nebraska Highway 2, with key lateral connections to U.S. Highway 6 and Nebraska Highways 92, 14 and 11. Besides the well-connected network of highways, Grand Island is the cross road of two Class 1 rail systems, Union Pacific and Burlington Northern Santa Fe.
Grand Island’s Economic Development Corporation is in the process of developing the Cornhusker Industrial Park. Over 1,700 acres are available with access to dual rail service. The advantages of this mega site are:
• Large area unencumbered by residential development
• Easy access to Highways 2, 30 and Interstate 80
• Increased truck traffic would not pose a problem
• Access to site from 3 sides.
Located in the southern most portion of the City of Grand Island is the Platte Valley Industrial Park. This park is particularly suited for a warehouse/distribution center as there is up to 320 acres available and is rail served.
The bottom line is that Grand Island appears to have all the keys to a successful warehouse/distribution operation. Grand Island is a vibrant community that lives and works together – and lives by their motto “All right here!”.
Hagerstown – Washington County Economic Development Commission
Hagerstown – Washington County is truly at the “crossroads of commerce.” It is a transportation hub for the regional economy with easy access to major Atlantic coast cities and the Midwest. With three interstates, a regional airport, two major rail providers, and a location less than 90 minutes from the Port of Baltimore, their transportation infrastructure is unmatched. With a well-rounded workforce of over 400,000 - Hagerstown – Washington County is a prime choice for distribution/logistics companies who are interested in locating to a business friendly environment.
Highway - Located at the strategic intersection of I-81 (a major north-south transportation corridor) and I-70 (connecting to the Baltimore/Washington metro area and points west) the area offers warehouse/distribution and logistics companies instant access to a wide consumer base. Other major roads are US Routes 11, 40, Alternate 40, 340 and 522. There are 27 local and long distance general motor freight carriers, which include DM Bowman, FedEx, Roadway, and many others.
Rail - The mainlines of CSX and Norfolk Southern railways provide economical shipment to anywhere on the Atlantic seaboard.
Air - Hagerstown Regional Airport (HGR) has the second-longest runway in the State of Maryland, behind only Baltimore-Washington Thurgood Marshall International Airport. The runway was recently extended to 7,000 ft with an air traffic control tower. There are 100 acres available for commercial development. 400 acres are dedicated for Foreign Trade Zone and 700 acres are eligible for Enterprise Zone benefits.
Washington County is less than 90 minutes from Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall (BWI) Airport. Handling over 21 million passengers and 26 million pounds of freight and mail a year, BWI is one of the fastest growing major airports in the United States. Two other international airports are also within a 90-minute drive: Dulles International (IAD), west of Washington D.C., and Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA), in the heart of D.C.
Water - For freight and cargo via water transport, the Port of Baltimore and Port of Virginia are options for businesses located in Washington County. The Port of Baltimore is ranked in the top 15 for overall annual tonnage and value of cargo. The Port of Virginia boasts the largest intermodal facility on the east coast. Both ports are accessible via highway and rail.
High Point Economic Development Corporation
High Point, NC
High Point, a thriving city of more than 100,000 residents, is located in North Carolina’s Piedmont Triad – the nation’s 37th largest metro area with a population of 1.6 million. High Point’s strategic location and transportation assets make it easy for a company to distribute products to the majority of the US population.
• High Point is halfway between Miami / Boston and Atlanta / Washington. It is in the geographic center of both NC and its region.
• Four interstate highways are in High Point or soon will be.
• A third runway is opening at Piedmont Triad International Airport, which is served by seven air cargo companies.
• The region boasts a deep-water-port inland terminal along with passenger and freight rail service.
• More than 100 trucking companies serve the region with more than 60 local terminals.
Distribution / logistics / warehousing is a major industry cluster for High Point. In 2009 alone:
• The FedEx Mid-Atlantic Hub opened its first phase at Piedmont Triad International Airport. High Point is expecting a host of distribution companies to open over the next several years due to the Hub.
• Polo Ralph Lauren Corp. celebrated the one-year anniversary of its second High Point major fulfillment / distribution center. The RalphLauren.com division announced double-digit growth far exceeding its first-year business expectations.
• Check manufacturer Harland Clarke Corp. opened a major fulfillment center.
• Schnadig International opened its East Coast furniture distribution center.
• Hormann LLC, a supplier of garage and other kinds of doors, opened a warehouse facility.
• Wema Americas opened a distribution center for components for the automotive industry.
• Furniture importer Antiques by Zaar opened a warehouse facility.
• Guilford Technical Community College announced plans to build the “Piedmont Triad Center for Global Logistics” just north of the city.
Pflugerville Community Development Corporation
Selected by Forbes magazine as one of the fastest-growing US suburban cities, Pflugerville is becoming the latest growth area for Central Texas and it is a growing destination for warehouse/distribution companies. Located 16 miles northeast of downtown Austin, at the intersection of State Highways 45 and 130, it is 15 minutes from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.
Pflugerville has over 5000 acres of developable land along State Highway 130 and 45. A new 1 million square foot light industrial park is almost half completed. One million square feet of shopping is well on its way at the corner of SH130 and SH45. Wal-Mart opened in March 2007 bringing in new pad sites every day all around the building.
The transportation network is a vital characteristic of any city. Pflugerville is well served by highways, arterial streets, and airports to connect it to other areas of the region and the rest of the world.
Pflugerville is in a strategic location. There is plenty of available land, a pro-business administration and a well-run municipal government working to help businesses succeed.
Sioux Falls Development Foundation
Sioux Falls, SD
With jet aircraft, rail and truck, people and cargo move in and out of Sioux Falls every hour of every day. The city is the "Crossroads of the Nation" at the intersections of I-90 and I-29. Their regional airport is connected to world-wide destinations and fleets of trucks and an active railroad industry serve the business community.
Over-the-road freight service is well provided for in Sioux Falls. Over 50 truck lines serve Sioux Falls with many maintaining terminal facilities locally. Leading national and regional carriers serving Sioux Falls are capable of handling all types of freight.
Joe Foss Field, Sioux Falls’ regional airport, is located approximately two miles northwest of downtown. The airport is the largest in South Dakota.
Rail service to and from Sioux Falls is provided by the BNSF Railroad. BNSF provides service nation-wide with over 32,000 miles of track, and can accommodate all types of materials. A number of industrial areas in and around Sioux Falls, including the Sioux Empire Development Parks, have rail access.
South Dakota has a very attractive business climate. There is no State Corporate Income Tax, no State Personal Income Tax, no Personal Property Tax and no Inheritance Tax.