Officials from the City of Statesville announced plans Friday for a business park they hope will create as many as 3,400 jobs over the next decade.
Larkin Regional Commerce Park, a 1,020-acre property tucked just off I-77 at exit 45 southeast of Statesville, has an estimated market value of $650 million as well as $37 million in infrastructure development. Plans for the site include 5 million square feet of industrial development and 750,000 square feet of commercial/retail space featuring restaurants and hotels.
Officials hope the park will become a regional hub for advanced manufacturing and e-commerce.
“Larkin has been a major focus in our city for over a decade,” Statesville Mayor Costi Kutteh said. “Elected officials have worked diligently to make this a reality.”
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The project was originally announced in 2007 as a mixed-use development, but those plans were halted in the wake of the Great Recession.
“This property – and most of our country – suffered economic setbacks,” Kutteh said. “But all the while, local elected leaders and staffs supported and funded projects, and continued to build foundations for the development of Larkin so that it would not only be possible, but highly likely.”
The development coincides with investment in expansion and infrastructure of the Statesville Regional Airport and improvements to I-77 and I-40. The city and state have split the cost of a $5.5 million connector road to lead out to the Larkin property from the airport, and the state gave the city an $8 million grant for parallel taxiway construction. About $250 million worth of interchange improvements to I-77 and I-40 are expected to be complete by 2019.
“The size and scope of Larkin ... will not only drive economic growth locally, but will serve as a platform for the regional economy and will be a boost to the entire state of North Carolina,” U.S. Senator Thom Tillis told the audience at Statesville’s city hall.
The city has partnered with three Charlotte-based real estate developers – The Keith Corporation, Scott Development Group and LandDesign –to work on the property. In the coming months, the city says it will iron out a development agreement and begin to recruit tenants.
“If you come to the Charlotte area and want to do business, we will have the corner on that market now,” said Mayor Pro Tem Michael Johnson. “We have the optimum spot to do business. Statesville truly is where it all comes together.”