City of Center Press Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NEW CENTER EDC PROGRAM FULLY DOCUMENTS FUTURE INDUSTRIAL SITES
Inaugural 22 Acre Site Has Full Utilities Plus Highway Access
CENTER, Texas (June 8, 2016) – The Center Economic Development Corporation recently created a Documented Sites program to increase the number of sites that can be developed for industrial or commercial land uses.
Following the summer 2015 sale of the former Bruce’s Hardwood Flooring plant, the community did not have any properties prepared or positioned for marketing to industrial prospects. “When a company is looking to invest in a community, they need assurances there will not be any surprises with a site,” explained John Snider, Center Economic Development Corporation Board President. “A company also needs to be certain they can move quickly into a community to start operations. This program is a way to expedite the process.”
The Economic Development Corporation Board did not want to make the large investment in creating an industrial park. “This would have involved buying land, extending utility infrastructure, building streets, etc., and can become expensive quickly” Snider continued. “And, the Board did not want to compete with private land owners.” To resolve this dilemma, an innovative solution was needed where a site could be prescreened in identifying development issues and costs yet still fit with the Board’s values.
The new documented sites partnership program seeks to identify larger tracts of land that the City can provide utility service. A contractual partnership is created with the landowner where they provide a clean property deed and agree to a 5 year not to exceed sale cost. The EDC pays the up-front costs to document the site including a new boundary survey, topographic survey, Phase I environmental, archeological, wetlands delineation, endangered species, utility identification, and highway access studies culminating with a conceptual layout of the property plus a development cost estimate.
The City of Center’s 2014 Comprehensive Plan update also identified the need for additional land to be developed for industrial purposes. To qualify, a site must be in the City’s extra-territorial jurisdiction, be no less than 20 acres, and be eligible to be served with City utilities
The program’s inaugural site is a 22 acre tract owned by a local developer. This developer previously partnered with the EDC to develop the Center Industrial Park across the road. The City recently installed a new sewer line in front of the site and is in the process of upgrading adjacent water service. The EDC contracted with KSA Engineers to complete the work as a turnkey service.
The owner agreed to accommodate any build-to-suit and a sales price not to exceed $1 million.
The study identified the need for drainage work to accommodate multiple sites on the property. The conceptual layout provides for two highway accesses and three 20,000 square foot buildings. All the other studies came back with no significant findings and answering many of the questions that would delay closing or create obstacles for the buyer.
Anyone wishing to receive a copy of the study need only to contact Center City Hall at 936/598-2941.
City of Center
617 Tenaha Street
Center, Texas 75935