HUNTSVILLE, Alabama – Officials said today that a 1,252-acre site off Powell Road in Limestone County has been certified as a Tennessee Valley Authority Mega Site, positioning the location to compete globally for large-scale manufacturing projects.
For a site to receive TVA certification, it must be at least 1,000 acres, with interstate access, the potential for rail service, and utility service capable of serving a major manufacturing facility.
“The certification is our international calling card telling global manufacturers we are open for business and a prime place for industry and jobs,” Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle said. “This site should attract a high-tech, high-end company for worldwide customers.”
The Chamber of Commerce of Huntsville/Madison County said the mega site stands in the heart of the region’s industrial development expansion zone. In the past year, Polaris Industries, the maker of off-road vehicles, and GE Aviation, which produces jet engines and components, have announced major projects in the area.
The Huntsville Mega Site is the first in Alabama to secure TVA certification.
“With this certification in hand, the Huntsville Mega Site is well positioned for a wide range of large-scale projects from major companies based around the world,” Governor Robert Bentley said. “The Huntsville area has been a main driver of growth for the state, and this will make it even more attractive for new investment and well-paying jobs.”
‘OPPORTUNITY TO SUCCEED’
TVA has enjoyed success with its certified mega sites, with five of the seven locations now home to industrial projects involving capital investment topping $5 billion. McCallum Sweeney Consulting certified the Huntsville Mega Site.
For site selection experts, the certification means no major obstacles will stand in the way of development at the site. It also allows for a rapid timetable for the project to move forward.
“TVA is not just giving us an opportunity to succeed, but to lead,” Limestone County Commission Chairman Mark Yarborough said. “Their ‘best-in-class’ power generation and our existing interstates, water, sewer, and natural gas capabilities, our second-to-none workforce, and our local leaders’ commitment to economic development, allows Limestone County to compete globally.”
The Economic Development Partnership of Alabama has a separate certification program, called AdvantageSite, geared toward advanced prepared locations. There are now 55 active AdvantageSites across the state. Since the program began in 2008, 21 projects have located on designated sites, creating more than 4,000 jobs and attracting $900 million in capital investment, according to the EDPA.