Planned empty building needed for Bartholomew economic development

A $3.2 million dollar empty building being planned by Force Construction for the Edinburgh area will be a major tool to help economic development in the northwestern part of Bartholomew County, according to economic development officials.

Jason Hester, head of the Greater Columbus Economic Development Corp. told the Bartholomew County Commissioners yesterday that the county has missed out on more than 50 prospective businesses simply because there were no ready and open buildings to use here. Hester said he has been begging local developers to consider shell buildings as a way to help lure companies. The Force shell building, on County Road 800N, will initially be 50,000 square feet with walls, a high ceiling and unfinished floor. It could be expanded to 400,000 square feet on the 11 acres of property.

Force Holdings was one of two companies to be granted tax abatements last week by the Bartholomew County Council in the newly designated economic development area in the Taylorsville and Edinburgh corner of the county. Hester said because the properties are also in the county’s Tax Increment Financing District, the commissioners also needed to consent to the abatement requests.

County Commissioners voted unanimously to consent to the Force request, as well as a second abatement request from the Georg Utz company.