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Business park draws interest
Commonwealth Crossing Business Centre
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Above, a vehicle works to clear and “grub” or pile up trees at the Commonwealth Crossing Business Centre in the Ridgeway area. Once workers finish that job, surveying and other work, grading can begin. (Bulletin photos by Mike Wray)
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Thursday, July 17, 2014

By BEN R. WILLIAMS - Bulletin Staff Writer

Preliminary site work has begun at Commonwealth Crossing Business Centre (CCBC), and multiple parties have expressed interest in the site, according to Henry County Administrator Tim Hall.

Hall said that during the lengthy grading permitting process for the site, the county took two clients to speak with the Army Corps of Engineers about their interest in locating to CCBC.

Those two clients still are interested in the site, and other parties have expressed interest as well, Hall said. He could not offer further details about the companies.

“We’re pursuing discussions with everybody who looks like they would be a good fit,” Hall said. “We’ve said all along that we think CCBC is a game changer for us, and we wouldn’t anticipate pursuing any company that wouldn’t fit into that overall scheme of wanting to make an (economic) impact. Those are the guys that we’re interested in, and so far, those are the ones that are interested in us.”

The preliminary site work at CCBC is advancing steadily, according to Henry County Public Service Authority Director of Engineering Tim Pace.

Pace said that on June 6, a pre-construction meeting was held between county engineers and contractors from Blythe Development Co. of Charlotte, N.C. Since then, initial activities — such as setting up an office trailer on site and establishing power and water connections — have been completed.

Now, Pace said, the surveying portion of the project is well underway and clearing and “grubbing” of trees has begun.

“The surveyors had to go out and delineate the limits of construction (grading),” he said. “I’m going to guess they’re probably 70 percent around the perimeter of the limits of construction. They have started the E and S (erosion and sediment) activities, which are measures that are put up to control erosion and sediment runoff. They’re just really getting started on that, which includes (constructing) silt fences and sediment traps and things of that nature.”

As the erosion and sediment measures are put in place, Pace said, the land can be cleared of trees, stumps and vegetation to prepare for grading. One 5-acre section already has been approved for clearing, he added.

“I was out there (Tuesday),” Pace said, “and they’ve almost got enough E and S control measures in place to do another 12 acres. As they put these measures in, they can expand their clearing and grubbing activities for the site.”

Once the initial clearing has been completed, Pace said, grading can begin. According to a previous Bulletin article, the county intends to grade a 200-acre pad for development.

Pace said the county has a 20-month contract with Blythe Development for the project.

“That does not include if we have any project shutdowns due to weather,” he said. “If we use last year’s winter (as a model), we probably would have had a project shutdown because the winter was so bad. ... Right now, it’s on schedule for a 20-month project, and I’m sure the contractors want to meet that if not exceed that.”

In June, the Henry County Board of Supervisors approved a contract with EMI Security to provide security cameras at the site, the video feeds of which will be accessible to county staff from computers at the Henry County Administration Building. Pace said the cameras have been ordered and hopefully will be installed by mid-August at the latest.

“It’s going to come in very handy,” he said. “It’s at least an hour round trip for me to go out to the site if there’s something I need to look at. When we’ve got these video cameras up, I’ll be able to bring it up on the computer and take a look at it. It may save me a trip.”

Added Pace, “We can monitor the progress, and we can do time-lapse video. We definitely want to monitor this site. When you’ve got a project of this magnitude, you want to stay on top of it.”


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