David Branscomb

DBTechnologies founder and owner David Branscomb was on site and getting his hands dirty alongside local helpers Wednesday, prepping the Hanceville facility that’ll soon host his startup high-tech fabrication company ahead of its upcoming move-in. DBTech got its start as an incubator project at Wallace State, but is making the big leap to its new permanent home — a repurposed industrial building along Alabama Highway 91 in east Hanceville.

Progress toward getting a high-tech manufacturing tenant ready for move-in day took a significant step last week, as Hanceville leaders awarded a bid to extend sewer service to the Industrial Board-owned facility where DBTechnologies will open its planned materials fabrication shop.

At its recent regular meeting, the Hanceville City Council accepted a $100,500 sewer extension bid to deliver service to the industrial site on the city’s west side. That figure marks an approximate $71,000 reduction in cost from a previously-submitted bid of more than $172,000, after the council sought ways to bring the initial estimate in line with the project’s total budget, constrained by grant funding, of $120,000.

Hanceville mayor Kenneth Nail said the steep savings stem from the company agreeing to handle on-site preparatory work, as well as renegotiation with the contractor.

“The extension requires a lift station, and DBTech has agreed to wire up the pump for that. They’ll also be responsible for the maintenance of the lift station,” said Nail. “The contractor was also able to cut a few more things to help us get the price down. The bid originally came in at $172,000, but we only had $120,000 in grants and funds to get it done. Now, we’re hopeful that it could potentially end up costing around $110,000 when all said and done.”

No other sewer customers will be served by the short sewer line extension, which reaches westward to the DBTechnologies site along Alabama Highway 91. The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA) has committed $100,000 toward the cost of the sewer work, with the Cullman County Community Development Commission contributing an additional $20,000. The council first approved the project in March with a tentative completion timeline of 60 days, though the renegotiated bidding process, said Nail, has since extended that window.

DBTechnologies announced it would make Hanceville its permanent home in July of last year. Under the oversight of materials engineer David Branscomb and Patricia Branscomb, his wife, the company first incubated its startup concept on the campus of Wallace State Community College as a designer and manufacturer of proprietary heat-resistant woven fiber material for use in high-tech applications.

Benjamin Bullard can be reached by phone at 256-734-2131 ext. 234.

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