U.S. Commerce Department Invests $4.6 Million to Build Infrastructure and Support Investment in Oklahoma
Contact: Public Affairs Department, (202) 482-4085
Friday, September 29, 2014
Friday, September 29, 2014
WASHINGTON - U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker today announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding nearly $4.6 million in grants to build critical infrastructure and encourage investment in Oklahoma City, Tulsa, Clinton, and Shawnee, Oklahoma. The grants support diverse communities within the state, including the Potawatomi Tribal nation, communities affected by recent natural disasters, and larger cities looking to support and attract businesses.
“The Obama Administration and Commerce Department are committed to improving our nation’s infrastructure, which is crucial for both economic growth and job creation,” said Secretary Pritzker. “The EDA grants announced today support projects that will encourage investment in four Oklahoma communities, helping create job opportunities and strengthening local economies.”
The investments announced today include:
- In Shawnee, a $1.2 million grant to the Potawatomi Nation will enable development of rail infrastructure, which is a critical next step on the development of the Iron Horse Industrial Park in Shawnee, Oklahoma. Phase I of the development of the industrial park consisted of the installation of water and wastewater lines, the main concrete road, the telecommunications lines, and the initial rail lines. The additional improvements proposed in Phase II are now needed to further develop the park to attract more businesses and manufacturers and better take advantage of the park's Foreign Trade Zone status. According to the grantee, Perk Dynamics has committed to locating a 5,000-square-foot coffee roaster and distribution facility within the building and begin a joint project with Native American Coffee Company and distribution of the locally made AutoPerk “The Automated Barista.” The company expects the project will create 15 jobs and generate $350,000 in private investment.
- In Oklahoma City, a $1 million grant to the Oklahoma City Redevelopment Authority (OCRA) will help fund street improvements that will improve access and add streetscape beautification to serve the western gateway into the University of Oklahoma Health Center and bioscience campus. This area is home to some 21 organizations which offer health services and bioscience research facilities and employ approximately 13,000 individuals. Additionally, EDA’s investment will help enhance access and upgrade public utilities for existing and proposed uses along the Stiles Street, including the Oklahoma School of Science and Mathematics, the Oklahoma Chamber of Commerce, the Oklahoma Department of Commerce, and the proposed General Electric Global Research Oil and Gas Technology Center (OGCT), a 95,000-square-foot facility. The OGTC will be one of only eight GE Global Research Centers in the world, which the grantee believes will help retain, expand and attract new businesses in the central Oklahoma region. According to the grantee, the OGTC has a strong desire to partner with higher education institutions across the region, furthering coordination of economic development efforts in central Oklahoma. EDA’s investment will develop regional capacity as well as create 23 jobs and generate nearly $10 million in private investment, according to the grantee.
- In Tulsa, a $950,000 grant to Tulsa County will support the construction of roadway improvements in unincorporated Tulsa County to accommodate area businesses. The proposed roadway improvements and extension will accommodate the increased traffic to area businesses, including the new Macy’s distribution and fulfillment center, in Tulsa County. According to the grantee, the project will create 1,557 jobs, and the company will invest $160 million for construction and equipment.
- In Oklahoma City, a $600,000 grant to the Oklahoma Department of Commerce will support implementation of the Global Oklahoma program, a state-led initiative to encourage greater foreign direct investment, particularly in the aerospace and energy clusters, and increase exports for small and medium-sized businesses. The program is intended to increase Oklahoma’s international presence through targeted outreach efforts and provide technical assistance to Oklahoma-based firms to facilitate entry into new markets and increased exports. Particular focus will be given to communities affected by the 2008 tornadoes and flooding, to assist in longer-term resiliency efforts. According to the grantee, the project is expected to directly contribute to an increase in market exposure for Oklahoma, resulting in increased foreign direct investment and opening of new market opportunities for Oklahoma-based businesses.
- In Clinton, a $750,000 to the Clinton Industrial Authority will improve infrastructure to help develop a 100.55-acre industrial park located in the Southwest edge of the city. The investment will help the city expand job creation and private investment within the region's oil and gas and transportation and warehousing clusters. The city had been unable to attract companies to the region due to the lack of industrial space available, and this project will help the city to meet current and future opportunities for industry expansion. The grantee anticipates that the investment will create between 50 and 55 jobs.
About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.