COLUMBIANA, Ohio (WKBN) – City and county officials are hoping that a 90-acre site located next to a golf course and just off Route 11 near Columbiana will become home to a state-of-the-art metal fabricating plant.
“It could bring up to 120 jobs over the next three to four years,” Columbiana City Manager Lance Willard said. “High paying jobs, so we’re pretty excited about that.”
For the last eight months, officials with the city, neighboring Fairfield Township, Columbiana County and others have been talking with executives of AMP Corporation, trying to lure a $100 million dollar facility to a patch of land in the township off Cherry Fork Road.
This week, those executives spoke with the city planning commission, saying they will need utility lines extended to the site.
“It is outside the city right now, so it would be annexed in,” Willard said.
That’s ultimately something both township Trustees and County Commissioners will have to approve.
“We are working very diligently at putting all the pieces together to make sure that this site is ultimately selected,” Tad Herold with the Columbiana Co. Development Dept. said.
But with the company also looking at dozens of other possible locations, the question on the minds of neighbors and local officials is: Why here?
“My guess is that is has certain (transportation) advantages being very close to Route 11,” Herold said.
But Willard said company executives like that the site is close to both Youngstown and Kent State Universities.
“They think that the knowledge is there, the knowledge base is there, and they can build upon that.”
Executives plan to meet with Fairfield Trustees tomorrow night to discuss their annexation plans..others say the company is looking to a late summer start for construction.
“Maybe if they get a feeling that things are going to happen, maybe they’ll be able to work through that,” Willard said.
If all falls into place, the new plant could be operating in 2017.