Southbridge Industrial Park could be state's first 'mega site'
By Sarah Te Slaa, Multimedia Producer/ Anchor - email
Southbridge Industrial Park could be the state's first certified mega site.
Mega talk about a mega possibilities for the Southbridge Industrial Park. At a special meeting, Debi Durham, the director of Iowa's Economic Development Authority, talked to Woodbury County Supervisors, and leaders from Sioux City, Sergeant Bluff, and Salix about why the industrial park would be a perfect candidate for the state's certification as a mega site.
"Southbridge is quite frankly one of our best possibilities," says Durham. "It is so well positioned and the massive amount of land you have in that area, it's a very prime candidate in the state and it could be the very first certified mega site in the state."
A mega site certification from the state means the land is a prime spot for large industries to move in and build. A mega site consists of a thousand acres or more of undeveloped land that's near highways, waterways, and railroads with basic infrastructure in place. Southbridge is only one of two possible mega sites in the state and that could mean mega opportunities for the area.
"Development in these certified sites is quality development that are paying the wages that families can live on," says Durham. "It's about raising the standard of living for our citizens. That's an agenda policy we can all embrace."
That's why Woodbury County, Sioux City, and surrounding communities have a vested interest in the site. But they would all have to work together to buy the land options. Once that happens, the state would pay for the certification process, and then pay for the marketing to bring in those big industrial companies that could change the economic landscape forever.
"This is our future," says Rhonda Capron, a Sioux City Councilwoman. "This is why we need to do this right now."
"We are sitting in wonderful position, but we've got to make it happen," says Mark Monson, a Woodbury County Supervisor.
"Now we have an opportunity," says George Boykin, a Woodbury County Supervisor. "We have a great opportunity for this county that we should not pass up."
After the meeting, most of the leaders agreed that they have to work together and work quickly to get the mega site certification. That certification process can take up to 18 months.
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