Business Expansion One of Several This Year

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Vallourec Star’s decision to break ground in Youngstown was one of the first major investments to kick-start business expansions in the Valley.

Since the first announcement in 2009, several more companies have taken a chance on the area, making significant business investments of their own.

From 2012 to 2013, has reported on several companies expanding and hosting cutting ribbons.

Exterran, which produces oil and natural gas production equipment, opened its newest facility in May, adding 40 jobs.

Also in May, Ohio Star Forge announced a $20 million expansion creating 30 jobs in Champion Township.

There’s also the $300 million dollar NiSource gas processing plant in Springfield Township, the $3 million dollar expansion at BOC Water Hydraulics, and a nearly $2 million investment in railroad tracks and roads for frac sand at Buckeye Transfer Realty in Columbiana.

“I think what has happened now for all the Mahoning Valley is the fact that we’re not negative when it comes to the possibility of something good happening here, ” said Girard Mayor Jim Melfi.

Tom Humphries of the Youngstown Warren Regional Chamber said Vallourec Star’s decision to locate in the Valley served as a catalyst for business.

“This is really pioneered a lot of opportunities here in the community, and then right on the heels with the gas and oil, it’s just been one great ride.”

Industry suppliers in the Valley may have also fueled Vallourec Star’s expansion decision.

“We’ve had an excellent relationship with the management, and that’s given us forward the opportunity to meet their suppliers and discuss opportunities for them here,” said Humphries.

“I think there’s more good things to come for both Youngstown and Girard out of this project,” Melfi said.

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