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Capito expected to participate in dedication of Technology Drive

November 28, 2011|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | matthew.umstead@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — U.S. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito is expected to participate in a ribbon-cutting ceremony Tuesday morning that will mark the completion of an access road in Tabler Station Business Park, which has been eyed by a company that could bring more than 2,500 jobs to Berkeley County.

Capito, R-W.Va, is expected to give the keynote address at the dedication ceremony for Technology Drive, an L-shaped access road connector to U.S. 11 and Business Park Drive, formerly known as Tabler Station Road.

Stephen Christian, executive director of the Berkeley County Development Authority, said Monday that the new road serves a part of the business park that state and county officials have been using to try to recruit a company that would bring two phases of development that could be worth millions of dollars to the community.

The first phase of the investment, currently dubbed “Project Java,” would be a $48 million distribution center that Christian has said would create 400 permanent jobs and up to 1,000 seasonal jobs.

Christian acknowledged Monday that he probably misspoke in September when he indicated the company’s decision on whether to invest in Berkeley County would come by the end of October.

When asked if any company is close to locating a large facility in Berkeley County, Christian said the information was “unsubstantiated gossip,” and no deal had been struck.

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“There’s talk about stuff, but it’s just talk,” Christian said.

Christian said previously that the county was a finalist among less than five communities vying for the unnamed company’s investment.

Less than a half-mile in length, the Technology Drive project was financed in part through a $311,220 federal transportation grant and as much as $400,000 from state’s Industrial Access Road grant program, according to the development authority, which credited Capito for helping secure the federal money.  

Technology Drive is the primary access road for the east side of the business park. Capito’s office, in announcing her participation in the event, said she helped secure $1.2 million in 2005 and $332,500 in 2009 to help with the business park’s construction.

Capito has a busy day scheduled in Martinsburg Tuesday. She’s reading to pre-kindergarten students at Winchster Avenue Elementary School before the ribbon cutting.

Later, she will tour the VA Medical Center in Martinsburg and South Middle School to learn about the Success Through Empowerment Program to combat teen pregnancy.

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