From time-to-time, we get called upon to provide help for economic development projects in our area. Sometimes, they are simple plant expansions, extensions for subdivision or retail needs, or questions on warehousing projects.
Through the years, the list of industries varies and we have many calls for such things as mini- steel mills, ethanol plants, car battery manufacturers, automobile parts manufacturers, etc.
Over time, these seldom materialize, the economy changes, and nothing comes of them. We invest valuable time with little payback. But economic development is like that and The District is committed to the effort. It’s the primary reason we were a charter member of the Wood County Economic Development Commission and attend chamber events in the region.
The county economic development office has been working on a project titled “Project Shelby” it since the fall of 2017. The District has handled questions on utilities since early this year. The public notice explains it will provide:
- $400 million dollar, 1 million square foot facility
- Add 500 new jobs
- Produce 1.8 gigawatts of power capacity solar cells
- Much property tax
- Much school tax to Lake Schools
If you saw last week’s news, it’s a new plant for First Solar making solar panels for commercial, industrial and utility-scale use. All of this in addition to last year’s $175 million dollar update at the current First Solar site in Perrysburg Township!
This is a large water and waste-water user. The site will be located at the corner of Tracy Road and SR 795. It has existing utility lines to serve it, but some improvements will be needed. Phase II may need additional work for our utilities to serve it at projected levels.
I can assure you The District will do our best!
Wood County has several good economic sites already, north-to-south. But it’s our transportation system of roads, highways, rail, air that puts us on the map! The utilities of water, sewer, electric, gas, fiber-optic further elevates our sites over others in the Midwest!
April 30, 2018