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LAFAYETTE, GA. - The old Imperial/Sweetheart Cup plant may house an expanded Walker County manufacturer soon, if due diligence checks for environmental hazards come back clean.

Larry Brooks, economic development and resource coordinator for Walker County, said Friday that a manufacturer in the county is in talks to buy the 200,000 square-foot facility, which is owned by the Allen family and has been used for storage and warehousing most recently.

Brooks said because discussions are currently ongoing, the potential buyer cannot be named.

But Brooks said "right now, it looks very promising."

He expects some word on the deal before the month's end.

If a deal is struck between the potential buyer -- which currently occupies a 40,000 square-foot facility in the county -- and the Allens, the unnamed company is expected to hire 50 local workers to fill its expanded operation, primarily in manufacturing.

Brooks said the potential new business is another example of Walker County's fortune in recent years, amidst a national economic downturn.

"Walker County has fared very well, even through this downtime," he said.

He said recent expansions and growth by United Synthetics Inc., Phillips Brothers Machine Co. and Clark-Cutler-McDermott Co., show the county's pro-business attitude and some sheer good luck.

"I tell everybody we've just been blessed," he said.

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