A double dose of good economic news breezed into Monroe in recent days, with Amazon disclosing it will kick off hiring for more than 750 positions in a more than 1 million square foot facility and Kroger and Ocado breaking ground on an automated warehouse that will bring more than 400 jobs to the city.
Officials say both projects are vital for the city and its residents.
“Both projects had a very high level of job creation, which is an increasingly important part of development,” said Jennifer Patterson, assistant to the city manager for economic development.
“We’re focused on developing career opportunities for our residents and those living in surrounding communities. Each project has a wide variety of jobs associated with their facility, and those diverse roles offer convenient flexibility and growth options to residents.”
Monroe’s role in moving a project forward varies with each project, but ultimately, city officials are searching for companies that are a good fit for both the goals of the city and the available resources that will support the company’s success, Patterson said.
Butler County Port Authority partnered with Kroger to allow for an exemption on the sales tax of all construction materials purchased in Ohio, according to Michael McNamara, development administrator for the port authority.
“We participated in this project by working with the city of Monroe to locate this facility in Butler County,” McNamara said. “The Butler County Port Authority is excited about partnering with Kroger to bring this cutting edge facility to Butler County. It’s the first of its kind in America, and we’re proud to be on the vanguard of innovation.”
Monroe is enjoying a surge in business growth with multiple companies investing, hiring, and expanding. The list includes Crane Consumables, which recently purchased a new building to more than double its production space, she said.
UGN’s 2018 expansion means that company is hiring for a wide variety of manufacturing positions, Patterson said. Deceuninck North America and Lahlouh have also recently posted multiple positions, she said.
With e-commerce and retail still going strong, many of Monroe’s logistics facilities also are hiring, including Home Depot’s Rapid Deployment Center, Hayneedle, Kohl’s and others.
The city attempts to keep job postings updated on its economic development website, www.i75economicdevelopment.org.
Patterson said Monroe is fortunate to still have several large tracts of land available for commercial and industrial development, and several of those landowners are actively marketing their sites to developers and potential companies through real estate brokers.
As Monroe moves through its comprehensive plan update this year, city officials are inviting residents, landowners, and businesses to share their opinions on what geographic areas of the city should continue to be focused on economic development and what types of economic development they would like to see, Patterson said.