North Carolina Economic Development Guide

2013

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son County of���cials sought an even more exhaustive third-party seal of approval for Ferncliff: certi���cation by the N.C. Department of Commerce. ���Once a site is certi���ed, that means everything we���re looking for is there,��� Sweeney says. ���It greatly enhances the competitive position of a piece of property.��� Certi���ed Industrial Site properties must meet each item on a 31-point checklist, including appropriate zoning, a Phase I environmental audit, topographical analysis, accessibility to industrialquality power and detailed information on pricing. Carroll oversaw a regional Certi���ed Industrial Site program as president of AdvantageWest in the late 1990s, and the state���s version, created in 2001, is modeled after it. Certi���cation enhances a property���s marketability by reducing the risks companies face when building new plants. ���It���s a rigorous process. The goal is to complete all that engineering and environmental work and have a shovelready site. What it really does is save companies like Sierra Nevada time��� ��� up to 18 months in site-preparation work, Carroll says. That resonated with Grossman, a chemist by trade who is known for attending to every detail. ���He and his team seemed to really appreciate the preparation that had been put into that park.��� North Carolina recruiters often visit existing locations of companies they are courting. Carroll and state marketing representative Garrett Wyckoff joined local and regional of���cials on a trip to Sierra Nevada���s headquarters in September 2011. Tate recalls his trek from Charlotte Douglas International Airport to Sacramento International Airport and then the two-hour drive north through the fertile Sacramento Valley. Though more than 2,500 miles from home, the terrain seemed familiar. ���We drove through a lot of agriculture on our way ���Once a site is certi���ed, that means everything we���re looking for is there. It greatly enhances the competitive position of a piece of property.���

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