Posted on November 6, 2019 at 9:00 AM by Dan Culhane
At a recent news conference in the Cardinal Room of the Iowa State University Memorial Union, Governor Kim Reynolds announced that Prairie View Industrial Center (PVIC), on the eastern edge of Ames, was recently designated a Certified Site through the Iowa Economic Development Authority’s (IEDA) certification program. Prairie View is only the second certified site among the state’s 27 total to be designated as a Super Park, which requires a park to be at least 500 acres in size.
Developed by Alliant Energy and the Ames Economic Development Commission (AEDC), in partnership with the City of Ames, this industrial site is over 1,300 acres with 730 of those acres under purchase option with current landowners, all located within the city limits of Ames. Access to transportation is a plus, as it is centrally located slightly east of Interstate 35 and north of four-lane U.S. Highway 30. The Union Pacific Railroad serves the property off the adjacent double tracks east to west on the main line.
Why is this important to the Ames community? That is a reasonable question given the economic development prowess of the Ames/Story County market. What makes this unique is that Ames has never been able to compete for large-scale industrial opportunities because the community has never had parcels of property that are served with all utilities and are as large as the tracts of land available in PVIC.
The AEDC routinely learns of economic development projects that need 50, 100, 300 acres or more. Most often these projects bypass the Ames market because the community has simply not had anything of this size in its arsenal. This is a game-changer for the community, and it is anticipated that Ames will start competing for projects that need large-scale sites, now.
Combine this asset with the other business parks in the Ames/Story County marketplace and we are in an enviable position to compete for meaningful economic development opportunities that will drive job growth for our community.
The Iowa Certified Site Program was launched by IEDA in May 2012 to address the lack of project-ready industrial sites in the state. It is an independent, third-party certification program that uses the nationally recognized site selection firm Quest Site Solutions as the certifying agent. The Iowa Certified Site Program is designed to consider a combination of national site location standards, as well as Iowa’s natural assets and the needs of the state’s targeted industry sectors.
Site certification remains one of the fastest growing trends in the site selection business, and by introducing certified sites to the market, Iowa is better able to compete for projects. In fact, Iowa has attracted more than $850 million in capital investment to-date due to the availability of these development-ready sites. Site selection is a rigorous process that ensures developers – working closely with local officials, utility partners and consultants – are better prepared to market their sites with specific site-related information and community data. Additionally, all the site due diligence is completed, and plans are in place to address any issues, meaning sites are relatively “risk-free” and the timeline to development is reduced.
Categories: Growing Business