Incoming manufacturer also brings work to Park Drive in Weirton
City officials are hoping the improved roadway will also entice more business to come in.
Pietro Fiorentini is currently constructing their facility. The Italian-based oil and gas manufacturer will open its first U.S. operation.
“Make no mistake. When it comes to economic development, public infrastructure is the catalyst for economic development,” said Pat Ford, Executive Director of the Business Development Corporation of the Northern Panhandle.
With infrastructure on the mind, construction will begin next week on Park Drive, the end of which Pietro Fiorentini will call home.
The city promised to extend the roadway to and from the facility.
“The fact that we could close that last gap by building this road sealed the deal to basically pave the way, literally, for $10 million of investment, both public and private, right here in the city of Weirton,” Ford said.
$50,000 of TIF money coupled with grant money, the city is putting roughly $700,000 into the project.
City Manager Travis Blosser said Weirton being a Home Rule municipality made it all possible.
“Being able to make those investments is key, and as a Home Rule municipality, we’ve had the fortune to be able to make these investments, and make those collaborative efforts work with the Business Development Corporation to make these things come to fruition, and so, without that local control, we wouldn’t have the ability to do these projects,” Blosser said.
While the extension is for Pietro Fiorentini, they aren’t the only ones who will benefit.
“This extension of Park Drive is huge, not just for Pietro Fiorentini, but North American Industrial Services right next door to where I’m standing,” Blosser said.
Those involved in the project are optimistic it won’t be the last endeavor at the park.
“We’re looking for that same collaborative private/public partnership with the city of Weirton and our county officials to make some announcements in the near future for the remaining 72 acres that we have in this park,” Ford said.
A tentative completion date for Pietro Fiorentini is set for August.