By Benjamin Bullard
The Cullman Times
Work to accommodate a major tenant at Hanceville’s industrial park is under way, with a little cooperation between local governments helping develop infrastructure at the new facility’s site on the south end of town.
Thanks to an agreement between the Hanceville Industrial Development Board and the Cullman County Commission, county road department labor and equipment is helping prepare an access road to the site, where Morris, Ala. -based Kennedy Galvanizing, Inc. will construct a new metallurgical coating plant.
The Kennedy project, announced in August, will represent a $2.75 million private capital investment and is expected to employ up to 30 local workers. Hanceville, along with municipal officials and industrial recruiters in the City of Cullman and the Cullman county commission, worked initially to bring the project into Hanceville after learning the company was courting new sites as it prepared to grow beyond its current operations in Jefferson County.
Hanceville Mayor Kenneth Nail said Monday the county commission had agreed to assist in prepping the industrial land around the new plant, offering $120,000 in labor and materials to grade an access road and install a storm water infrastructure.
“The City of Hanceville ID board continues to hold the deeds on this property, where the road is coming into the site — that’s the reason the county is able to help us build, as they have helped the City of Cullman in developing some of its industrial property in the past,” said Nail. “The [county] road department folks are telling us they believe they can basically have their end of the work done by the end of this week, if the weather holds.”
Kennedy Galvanizing, Inc. purchased 24 acres from Hanceville’s industrial development board for its new facility, which will lie just north of the Louisiana-Pacific plant near U.S. Highway 31 South. Nail said he’s hopeful the cooperative approach to developing the property will pay off as the city courts potential tenants that could occupy other available industrial properties, both near the Kennedy site and at standalone industrial tract farther north along Ala. Highway 91 East.
“It’s good when everybody comes together to make these things happen, because no one town can stand alone and do some of the work that’s been done in our area over the years if they try to just do it all by themselves. I think our folks are pretty appreciative of the county for offering to help get the Kennedy property ready for them to come in and start construction.”
*Benjamin Bullard can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 734-2131 ext. 270.