State lands plant: Local leaders say Brewton can benefit

Published 5:42 pm Monday, May 14, 2007

By By Kerry Whipple Bean – publisher
A German steelmaker's plans to build a 2,700-employee plant in Mobile County could lead to a &#8220multitude of opportunities” for Brewton and Escambia County, economic development officials said Friday.
ThyssenKrupp announced Friday that it will build a $3.7 billion steel and stainless steel processing facility near Calvert and Mount Vernon. The plant is expected to begin operation in 2010, and the average salary for permanent positions will be $50,000 to $60,000, company officials have said. The project will also create up to 29,000 construction jobs.
Much of the opportunities for Escambia County lie in suppliers and spinoff plants, economic development officials said.
Marshall Rogers, director of the Escambia County Industrial Development Authority, said the state plans to have an economic impact study on the project out later this week. That will show how the plant could affect Mobile County and its neighbors.
Brewton Mayor Ted Jennings said the state's success in landing the plant boosts the image for all of south Alabama.
Jennings said the steelmaker may not have a direct effect on Brewton - which sits about 85 miles from the site of the plant - but it will have an &#8220indirect impact.”
That indirect impact could create more jobs in the area. Blankenship said company officials estimate that for every primary job ThyssenKrupp provides, there is the potential for four more jobs.
Blankenship, Rogers and other tri-county economic development officials are already working to recruit suppliers, Blankenship said.
The Brewton Industrial Park has space and a spec building available for industries, he said.
Communities who hope to benefit from the project should have already begun to strengthen their image and quality of life opportunities, he said - and Brewton is in a position to make a good impression, he said.
Brewton lies just outside the 75-mile radius that normally attracts tier-one suppliers for a major plant such as ThyssenKrupp, Blankenship said.

Email newsletter signup