Putnam County Development Authority’s business park expands

HURRICANE, W.Va. — One of the industrial parks owned by the Putnam County Development Authority is expanding in size and economic opportunities for the region.

Putnam County Development Authority Executive Director Morganne Tenney came on WCHS Radio’s 580 LIVE Monday morning following the announcement made Thursday evening at the organization’s annual dinner that they recently sold two parcels in the Putnam Business Park located on U.S. 35 at Frazier’s Bottom.

Tenney said the fundraising event for the organization seemed like the most ideal time to share the news.

“We wanted to show everyone that was participating what is happening, what is moving forward, how are we driving development in Putnam County,” said Tenney.

Tenney said one of the parcels was sold to Diesel Drilling Corporation, a contractor specializing in drilled caisson installation, who purchased the property to develop a long-term facility in Putnam County for its company to continue to grow.

The second parcel was sold to Multicoat, a construction product supply industry who primarily services the paint, coating, and chemical sectors.

Tenney said they too are working on expansion in the area as this made the company’s second parcel they have purchased at the business park.

She said these mark the first sales made in the park in more than 10 years, and while the over 60 year old development authority has owned a number of industrial parks throughout the years, it never gets old to sell their space to the ones who already have connections to Putnam County.

“We do try to attract new businesses into Putnam County, but research shows that well over 80% of job creation is actually from your companies that are already here,” she said.

Tenney said Diesel Drilling currently employs around a dozen workers and they plan to invest upwards of $1 million in a new shop facility and headquarters at the park and increase their employment numbers.

The company not only serves West Virginia but Kentucky, Ohio, Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania, and has plans to expand to both North and South Carolina in the near future.

Tenney said Multicoat takes its business on a global scale, as they export across seas regularly and has products in about 16 different countries.

“That was actually the theme of our annual dinner last week that Putnam County is actually globally competitive,” said Tenney, “We wanted to share that there are international companies in Putnam County, obviously most people know about Toyota, but what I wanted to highlight at the dinner is how many companies and even small companies have products and services in countries all over the world.”

In addition to these companies, the business park is also home to FLSmidth, Schwann’s, Tasty Blend, Nippon Thermostat, and has more leasing spaces still available.

Tenney said on 580 LIVE that in addition to continuing their development with area businesses, PCDA is also working to develop the workforce and area housing opportunities in Putnam County, with a major aim in retaining young people.

PCDA has recently worked with the state to implement a housing tax credit in Putnam County as one of the first in the region to do so, and Tenney said this now means more new homes will come to the area.

She also said they recently started an apprenticeship program with Toyota, Nuccor and several other companies at Bridge Valley Community and Technical College to attract young people to more jobs in the area.

“We’re not only focused on business retention and expansion, but also our people,” said Tenney. “We love our community, how can we can more people to live here, and how can we keep them here, as well?”