Roane County will be the home of Volkswagen’s new Southeastern Regional Distribution Center, officials announced today.
At a combined ground-breaking/announcement event on-site at the Roane Regional Business and Technology Park at noon today, Roane County officials joined with Volkswagen officials to announce a $40 million 400,000-square-foot warehouse/distribution center project.
“I couldn’t be more pleased that Volkswagen has chosen Roane County to be the site of their new Southeastern distribution facility,” said Roane County Executive Ron Woody, “it announces to the region, the state, the nation and the world that Roane County is not only open for business – but it also confirms that Roane County, TN has an unmatched location for national and worldwide distribution and that we are very competitive in recruiting businesses and industries worldwide.
“We appreciate VW’s confidence in us and our workforce – and certainly appreciate their investment in our community. We look forward to a long and fruitful partnership with them for many years to come.”
The Volkswagen Group of America (VWGoA) facility will be built on 54.6 acres at the main entrance to Roane Regional along I-40 at Industrial Park Road exit (exit #362). The facility is slated to start distributing domestic auto parts for the Chattanooga-made Passat as well as other Volkswagen and Audi vehicles by early 2013. The construction will be built to accommodate any potential future expansion up to 600,000 square feet. The facility will employ at minimum 45 people and is expected to have an annual payroll of more than $3 million.
“We are thrilled to be here in Roane County for the groundbreaking of Volkswagen’s newest distribution center,” said Rawdon Glover, executive vice president of aftersales, Volkswagen Group of America. “Being centrally located, Roane County is a great location and gives us the ability to quickly distribute parts, creating an even better experience for our growing customer base.”
Addressing the need for increased infrastructure, the facility will begin as a redistribution center to service warehouses and will later expand to include a parts distribution center. The parts distribution operation will serve more than 100 dealers in the surrounding regions as well as in the US, Canada and Mexico.
Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam said of the announcement: “Our Jobs4TN plan identified six target industry clusters where Tennessee has a distinct advantage, and this new Volkswagen facility in Roane County is a primary example of why it is important to leverage assets. I’m grateful Volkswagen is expanding its presence here in the state and bringing new jobs to Roane County because projects such as this bring more direct and indirect investments to Tennessee.”
Leslie Henderson, President/CEO of The Roane Alliance, said, “We have worked for more than a year and a half to make this project a reality for Roane County and Volkswagen. Literally thousands of Alliance staff/volunteer and elected official hours have gone into the Volkswagen project team effort that is culminating in this announcement today and I couldn’t be more excited to be here today to at last be able to say, “Welcome to Roane County” to Volkswagen – our newest industrial partner.”
“I want to thank Volkswagen for choosing Roane County for its new distribution center and all those at the state and county levels who worked hard to make this project a reality,” said Commissioner Bill Hagerty, Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development. “The automotive industry is one of Tennessee’s biggest strengths and today’s announcement is further confirmation of our leadership in this sector along with the business friendly climate and quality workforce Tennessee offers.”
“This important project could not have happened without the time, energy and generous support of our industrial board, the Roane Alliance staff, our legislators, the County Commission, the State of Tennessee and the Tennessee Valley Authority,” Roane County Industrial Board Chair David Webb said. “Special thanks need to go to the state’s Economic and Community Development and Transportation departments – both of which are providing generous grants in excess of $1 million for infrastructure improvements necessary to make this project happen.”
Henderson also said that she would like to give a special thanks to “our economic development partners in the Knoxville Oak Ridge Innovation Valley for all the help and support they have given us throughout.”
“We are privileged to be developing this world-class distribution center for Volkswagen Group and are excited to be breaking ground here in Roane County,” said Whitfield Hamilton, senior partner with Panattoni Construction, the developer building the Roane County facility for Volkswagen. “This project will be a truly global operation and will create a local economic impact to Roane County in excess of $10,000,000 during the construction phase of the development. This is a great success story to have Volkswagen expanding their investment and employment in Tennessee.”
The Roane Alliance is Roane County’s economic development organization and consists of both public and private organizations, including the Roane County Chamber of Commerce, the Roane County Industrial Development Board and the Roane County Visitors Bureau. For more information about this project click on the ‘What’s New’ button on the Roane Alliance homepage at http://www.roanealliance.org