published Friday, April 1st, 2011

Enterprise South growing

Illinois-based Archer Daniels Midland has taken the first big step toward consolidating its Chattanooga-area operations in a new transfer facility.

Hamilton County Commissioner Larry Henry said ADM has offered to pay $623,700 for nearly 18 acres at Enterprise South Industrial Park, where the company plans to replace and combine its facilities now operating at Jersey Pike, River Bend and Cleveland, Tenn.

Henry said the company would provide corn syrup, starch and sugar products to consumers like McKee Foods and M&M Mars from the new location.

In total, the facility represents a $24 million to $27 million investment in Hamilton County, he said.

The main selling point was rail access, since the terminal facility will be used to “transfer liquid and dry bulk sweetener products from railcars to trucks for customer delivery,” the company said in a news release.

The new 50,000-square-foot complex should be complete by the summer of 2012, ADM said in a statement Thursday.

No layoffs are expected, and the number of jobs—25—are expected to remain the same, spokesman Roman Blahoski said later.

Chattanooga Mayor Ron Littlefield applauded the deal.

“This investment will also allow area businesses to transport their goods more quickly and easily, which will improve the efficiency of their operations and also increase their revenues,” he said.

Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger agreed.

ADM’s decision to relocate its operations is a move that will not only allow it to better serve its local customers, but will also create a substantial economic advantage for the entire community,” Coppinger said.

Pending city and county approval, construction is expected to begin in May.

Dan Whisenhunt contributed to this story.

about Ellis Smith...

Ellis Smith joined the Chattanooga Times Free Press in January 2010 as a business reporter. His beat includes the flooring industry, Chattem, Unum, Krystal, the automobile market, real estate and technology. Ellis is from Marietta, Ga., and has a bachelor’s degree in mass communication at the University of West Georgia. He previously worked at UTV-13 News, Carrollton, Ga., as a producer; at the The West Georgian, Carrollton, Ga., as editor; and at the Times-Georgian, Carrollton, ...

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