CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Duke Energy Progress has selected 220-acres of undeveloped land in Biscoe in Montgomery County, N.C., to participate in the utilitys 2013 Site Readiness Program.
The Site Readiness Program is the cornerstone of Duke Energy's economic development model. It identifies, evaluates, and improves industrial sites in the company's service territory for potential industrial development.
"Since our merger with Progress Energy, we have formed an enterprisewide economic development team to recruit large companies that will create investment and jobs to power the economy and our business in the six states we serve," said Stu Heishman, Duke Energy's vice president of economic development. "This year, our North Carolina Site Readiness Program is focused primarily on our new service area in the eastern part of the state."
As part of Duke Energy's assessment of the Biscoe property, top site selection consultant, McCallum Sweeney Consulting, will conduct a comprehensive assessment. Duke Energy will collaborate with county leaders and local economic development professionals to develop a strategy for providing water, sewer, natural gas and electricity to the site.
The parties also will recommend road improvements, easements and rights-of-way that would be required to develop the site, as well as steps necessary to mitigate any potential environmental impacts.
The Biscoe site in Montgomery County was one of 10 North Carolina sites chosen by the utility.
More than 35 counties submitted applications for Duke Energy's site readiness program in North Carolina and South Carolina.
"The Duke Energy Site Readiness Program strengthens our ongoing efforts to attract industry in Montgomery County. We have watched from the bleachers as Duke Energy worked with other counties around the state to successfully recruit industry for their communities. Now that Montgomery County is part of Duke Energy's service territory, it's our turn. We are glad to be a part of the team," said Ashley Sherrill Cagle, director, Montgomery Economic Development Corporation.
"Two of the major components of successful industrial recruitment are competitive electric rates and outstanding customer service. Duke Energy provides dependable, affordable energy throughout the communities we serve," Heishman said.
This work has become even more important in light of the weak economy and increasing competition among regions to attract business growth. More than 11 percent are unemployed in Montgomery County.
"New industry has a unique multiplying effect that benefits all of us. Children do better when their parents have opportunities and jobs. Communities do better when their citizens are employed. North Carolina is stronger when its citizens are productive taxpayers," said Tammy Whaley, Duke Energy's economic development manager for Montgomery County. "And Duke Energy is successful when the customers and communities we serve are successful."
Ideal properties for Duke Energy's site readiness program are 75 acres or larger, served by the utility. A qualified site can be suited either for a single, large industrial facility, data center, or potential industrial park (multi-tenant site).
Duke Energy's program has been recognized by Southern Business & Development Magazine as one of the South's top site readiness programs. Duke Energy's overall economic development program has also been consistently named by the Site Selection Magazine as one of the nation's "Top 10 Utility Economic Development Programs."
For more information about Duke Energy's economic development programs, visit www.considerthecarolinas.com.
Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 250 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available at: www.duke-energy.com.