Des Moines, IA- The Marion Enterprise Center (MEC) in Marion, Iowa has been designated an Iowa Certified Site by the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA). Governor Terry Branstad and Lt. Governor Reynolds made the announcement this morning at their weekly press conference at the State Capitol.
The Marion Enterprise Center is a 184 acre industrial park located on Highway 151 adjacent to the Marion Police Station and Marion Airport on the east side of Marion. 131 acres of the park are currently available, as two companies have already purchased and broke ground on two major expansion projects.
"Today's announcement is a significant achievement for the community. This designation means that our park will be marketed as being among the best available and most risk free sites to prospective companies looking to locate in Iowa," Nick Glew, MEDCO President stated. "Already the future home to two great companies, we are confident that our park has all of the differentiating features businesses are considering when choosing where to locate."
In an effort to address the lack of project-ready industrial sites in the state, the IEDA rolled out the Iowa Certified Site Program in May 2012. It is an independent, third-party certification program that uses the nationally recognized site selection firm of McCallum Sweeney Consulting (MSC) as the sole certifying agent. The Iowa Certified Site Program is designed to consider a combination of national site selection standards as well as Iowa's natural assets and industry needs of the state's targeted sectors.
"Creating jobs and increasing family incomes for Iowans is m administration's top priority," said Gov. Branstad. "With the announcement that six additional Iowa sites have gone through a rigourous certification process to be considered 'development-ready,' we are moving Iowa to the top of the list for projects that are looking for a home. Those projects mean more Iowa jobs."
Site certification is one of the fastest growing trends in the site selection business, and by introducing certified sites to the market, Iowa is better able to compete for large scale projects. By going through this rigorous process, developers - working closely with their local officials, utility partners and consultants - are better prepared to market their sites with specific site-related information and community data. All site due diligence is completed and resulting issues are mitigated, making the site "risk-free" and thus accelerating the development schedule.
Legacy Manufacturing broke ground on October 21, 2014 on a new $10.4 million, 133,000 square foot manufacturing and distribution facility in the Marion Enterprise Center. Legacy is a manufacturer of automotive and industrial products. The project retains 45 jobs in Marion and will create 15 additional jobs. Their site allows the company the potential to expand their facility to up to 320,000 square foot moving forward.
ELPLAST America Inc., a Zory, Poland based plastics manufacturer, is establishing their North American manufacturing headquarters in the Marion Enterprise Center as well. The company broke ground on October 22 on their $6 million, 30,000 square foot facility that will bring up to 30 jobs to Marion and Cedar Rapids Iowa City Corridor.
The Marion Enterprise Center was one of two sites named an Iowa Certified Site in Iowa's Cedar Rapids Iowa City Corridor. The Eastern Iowa Airport's 582-acre Super Park was also designated as an Iowa Certified Site, providing additional development-ready land for developers. Collectively, the Marion Enterprise Center and the Super Park provide powerful regional tools for the Cedar Rapids Iowa City Corridor.
For more information about the Marion Enterprise Center, visit www.marionenterprisecenter.org