Organization begins marketing build-ready sites to industrial prospects
SPEDA Commerce Park, a 142-acre industrial development in eastern Pulaski County, is moving forward rapidly — launching into new construction phases as 2023 comes to a close.
The project has now moved into phases 3, 4 and 5 of development with the help of $1.58 million in Kentucky Product Development Initiative funding the Somerset-Pulaski Economic Development Authority (SPEDA) received in July following a competitive grant process. During these phases, individual sites on the property will be prepared according to the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development’s criteria for shovel-ready and build-ready sites. SPEDA Commerce Park is a certified build-ready development and each site must meet state standards for that certification. Those standards include guidelines for site-prep, infrastructure and building plans and ensure the community eliminates barriers to development, making it easier for a prospective business to locate here.
Phase 2, which included installing all infrastructure (roads and utilities) for a section of the project, is also nearing completion, SPEDA President and CEO Chris Girdler said.
“We are making incredible progress at SPEDA Commerce Park and I am excited to begin meeting with industrial prospects to show them this development’s potential,” Girdler said. “Every time I go out there something new is happening. The economic future of Pulaski County is bright and we’re moving forward to realize that future at record speed, which is incredibly important given the time we’ve lost — this community has not experienced new industrial development in more than 20 years.”
Formerly known as the Garner property in the Pine Hill and Barnesburg Road area, SPEDA Commerce Park already has its first tenant — the Kentucky National Guard announced in 2020 its intentions to build a new regional readiness center and field maintenance shop on 18 acres. Since then, SPEDA has sold 11 acres at the park to a private developer who intends to build a large-scale commercial and retail complex facing Ky. 80.
Complemented by a $70 million federal road project that funded the new cloverleaf intersection at Ky. 461 and Ky. 80 and expanded four-lane road access — as well as the park’s adjacency to Valley Oak Commerce Complex — SPEDA Commerce Park has the potential to make eastern Pulaski County the epicenter for manufacturing, industrial, commercial and retail development in the Lake Cumberland region, Girdler said.
As Girdler begins meeting with industrial prospects, he will be armed with a new brochure that markets SPEDA Commerce Park, highlighting property details, existing commerce in the region and the benefits of joining the Somerset-Pulaski County economy.
“This piece highlights all of the amazing benefits of this location, from its proximity to Interstates 65 and 75 and the already thriving Valley Oak Commerce Complex to the quality of life it brings by being a part of the Somerset-Pulaski County community,” Girdler said. “We continue to make this a place where people want to live, and that is making it a place people want to work. I’m excited to show prospects the opportunities that exist at SPEDA Commerce Park.”