Need to Know: February & March 2019
Cloverleaf Cold Storage will be investing $21 million to expand their refrigerated warehouse, which will include the creation of 33 new jobs. “Cloverleaf Cold Storage is one of the largest cold storage warehousing and processing companies in North America and a valuable corporate partner for the City of Chesapeake and the Commonwealth,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Brian Ball. “With locations in eight states across the U.S., Cloverleaf’s decision to expand in the City of Chesapeake is a strong testament to the region’s motivated workforce and strategic location. We are confident that Cloverleaf will continue to thrive and contribute to Virginia’s booming food and beverage sector.”
Isle of Wight
Smithfield High School is setting their students up for success with a new career facility to help their students gain hands-on experience in several different high-demand fields. This 21,000 square-foot career facility includes a restaurant, maker space, mechatronics lab and nursing classroom. The maker space includes work tables, 3D printers, laser cutters, traditional wood-working and welding stations. This new career facility aims to strengthen the opportunities and experiences for students entering the work force straight from high school.
Construction is nearing completion on Phase III of Brooks Crossing in the Southeast Community. The project includes a 95,000 square-foot office building to be occupied by engineering and design professionals from Newport News Shipbuilding. The building will also house the Brooks Crossing Innovation and Opportunity Center, a new workforce center opening this spring. The Center will offer STEM learning opportunities and introduce students and adults to careers in Digital Shipbuilding. To support workforce development services at the Center, the City of Newport News was awarded a $896,802 grant through the Virginia Department of Social Services’ Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. To facilitate this grant, the City’s Department of Development will work with the Hampton Roads Community Action Program, the Greater Peninsula Workforce Board and Peninsula Regional Education Programs. The City will also partner with employers, non-profits and faith-based organizations to offer citizens customized, flexible, comprehensive, and innovative approaches to career awareness, skill development, wealth-building, supportive services and integrated case management support.
Norfolk’s new IKEA store will be hiring 250 employees leading up to their opening date of April 10th. The 331,000 square-foot store, which is the second IKEA location in Virginia, will include 42 rooms, four model-home interiors, a children’s play area, and a 354-seat restaurant.
Norfolk State University recently opened their Innovation Center in Downtown Norfolk, which offers entrepreneurship and innovation services. This coworking and incubation space is located on Main Street and provides office space, collaboration areas and meeting areas.
Collins Machine Works acquired and renovated an industrial building in the Port Centre Commerce Park to expand their existing naval and maritime machining business in Portsmouth. Collins Machine Works has been a part of the Portsmouth business community for over 60 years. The project site, a $3.3 million investment, provided the business an additional 32,000 square feet and offered close proximity to the Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Port of Virginia, availability of skilled workforce, and ease of access to local infrastructure. Collins Machine Works will add 20 employees with the expansion.
Portsmouth City Council authorized a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Armada Hoffler in order to begin discussion for the relocation of City Hall and redevelopment of the Portsmouth waterfront. While specific details of the project, such as costs, designs, timelines, etc., have not been determined, the authorized MOU allows city leaders to begin negotiations with the private company. City officials believe that redeveloping the city owned property will present new opportunities for downtown Portsmouth.
The Portsmouth Economic Development Authority has acquired a 50-acre site near the Tidewater Community College campus in the Victory Village area of Portsmouth for development. Economic Development staff is working with planners and engineers to prepare and market the site as a prime location with immediate highway access and visibility. The property is suitable for port-oriented businesses, can serve a 300,000-500,000 square-foot facility and is zoned for several other potential development opportunities.
Eight areas in Virginia Beach could see an influx of investment dollars under a new federal tax-incentive program intended to spur investment in low-income communities around the country. The opportunity zones program rewards investors with tax breaks for putting money earned from other investments back into businesses or real estate projects. The federal program is designed to incentivize investors to sell assets and invest the capital gains in areas that are in need of a boost. To view Virgnia Beach's eight opportunity zones, visit YesVirginiaBeach.com.