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Industrial park ready for tenants

February 06, 2002

Industrial park ready for tenants



By RICHARD F. BELISLE / Staff Writer, Waynesboro


WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Wharf Road Industrial Park, the borough's effort to lure jobs to the area, is ready to accept its first tenant.

The park, which covers more than 120 acres, has access off Wharf Road and Pa. 16 west of the borough.

It has 12 lots ranging from five to 20 acres.

It was built by the Waynesboro Industrial Development Corporation on land owned by Michaels Development Corp. of Clear Spring, Md., said Carol Henicle, executive director of the Greater Waynesboro Chamber of Commerce.

That arrangement was made because the WIDC could not afford to buy the land outright, Henicle said.

Henicle is also the administrator for the WIDC.

The WIDC will buy lots from the Clear Spring firm as tenants come into the park, Henicle said. The lots would then be sold to the tenants at a price per acre that will depend on the number of jobs the company will provide, she said.

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The park was built with a $900,000 grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development plus another $100,000 put up by the WIDC, Henicle said.

Water, sewer and gas lines are in and an access road has been built, Henicle said.

The new road is named for Zane A. Miller, a community leader and highly decorated World War II veteran from Waynesboro who died two years ago.

The WIDC wants to sell the lots to a diversified group of businesses, she said. "We don't want one big business. We want to diversify, not put all of our eggs in one basket," Henicle said.

A brochure advertising the park will be published soon and the WIDC will enlist the aid of the Franklin County Area Development Corporation to find tenants, Henicle said.

"There are a lot of opportunities for small and mid-size industrial parks," said L. Michael Ross, president of the FCADC. "The park has a lot of amenities. It will be attractive to businesses that want to expand, start up or move to this area."

Ross said the park will be marketed through real estate agents, government action teams, utility company representatives, anyone who has cause to run into companies looking for space, he said.

The biggest challenge is finding the first tenant, he said. "Success breeds success," he said. Activity on a site and landscaping have a major impact, he said.

The park's location, about 5 miles east of Interstate 81 is also a selling point, Ross said.

Henicle said three prospective tenants had shown interest in the park before the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and the country's economic downturn.

"Now they're just sitting tight," she said.

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