‘Transformational’ logistics park project kicks off in Macon County

TUSKEGEE, Alabama — Governor Kay Ivey joined leaders of Farpoint Development and the Macon County Economic Development Authority at an event today to mark the launch of an ambitious project to build the Regional East Alabama Logistics (REAL) Park, which aims to supercharge economic growth in the Tuskegee region. The groundbreaking ceremony comes as Farpoint...

Read More

Linde plans to build $83 million hydrogen plant in Alabama

McINTOSH, Alabama — Linde, a leading global producer of industrial gases, plans to build a new hydrogen plant in Washington County as part of an $83 million growth project that will have a substantial impact on the community’s economy. Linde said the new plant will reinforce the company’s robust supply network. and allow it to...

Read More

Pioneering remote aviation control tower landing at Selma’s Craig Field

SELMA, Alabama — Craig Field, the airport and industrial park in Selma, will soon become home to the nation’s first Remote Tower Air Traffic Control Center and a unique training academy stemming from a project that could revolutionize airspace control services in the United States. Advanced ATC Inc., an air traffic control academy in Valdosta,...

Read More

Report: 2021 growth projects bringing Alabama $7.7 billion in new investment

MONTGOMERY, Alabama — Governor Kay Ivey announced today that economic development activity across Alabama surged during 2021, with a new report showing that projects launched during the year will inject $7.7 billion in capital investment and almost 10,200 jobs into the state’s strengthening economy. The project activity is outlined in the 2021 New & Expanding...

Read More

Macon County logistics park project preps for initial construction

TUSKEGEE, Alabama — Construction is scheduled to begin soon on the first building in a logistics park along Interstate 85 in Macon County that backers say could have a massive economic impact when its three phases are developed. The project, called the Regional East Alabama Logistics (REAL) Park, stems from a partnership between the Macon...

Read More

Nature’s Earth Products plans $10.8 million expansion at Pickens County plant

REFORM, Alabama — Nature’s Earth Products LLC plans to invest over $10.8 million in an expansion project that will double the manufacturing capacity of its environmentally friendly products at the company’s facility in Pickens County. The Alabama Department of Commerce announced today that the growth project will add 12 new jobs to the Nature’s Earth...

Read More

Project to build $202 million graphite processing plant in Alabama kicks off

KELLYTON, Alabama — Westwater Resources and its subsidiary, Alabama Graphite Products LLC, this morning officially launched construction of a first-of-its-kind graphite processing plant in Coosa County that will produce an essential material for electric vehicle batteries. The $202 million plant, which is being built in the Lake Martin Regional Industrial Park just off U.S. 280...

Read More

Mercedes gives first look at electric EQS SUV coming to its Alabama assembly line

Mercedes-Benz gave the world a first glimpse today of the 2023 EQS sport utility vehicle, an all-electric luxury ride that will be built at the automaker’s Alabama plant later this year. The world premiere of the EQS SUV comes amid preparations at the Mercedes campuses in Tuscaloosa County, where the EQS and sibling EQE SUVs...

Read More

Across rural Alabama, downtowns are making an energetic comeback

Cities in rural Alabama are seeing a rebirth in their downtowns, with a blitz of new business openings, property renovations and multimillion-dollar investments. Pop-up shops, green spaces, art festivals and social media buzz are among the trends that are helping drive the efforts to bring merchants, residents and visitors back to the heart of the...

Read More

Alabama researchers focus on peanut genome to improve harvests

Peanuts are an important part of rural Alabama’s economy, and the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology is doing innovative research aimed at producing healthier harvests. Scientists at the Huntsville facility have partnered with the state’s farmers and agricultural industry leaders on genomic projects involving peanuts. The work involves an integrated approach, with researchers using input from...

Read More

Tenax plans $1 million in upgrades, new jobs at rural Conecuh plant

EVERGREEN, Alabama — Tenax Corp. plans to invest $1 million on improvements and new production machinery at its manufacturing facility in Evergreen, where it has operated for three decades, according to Conecuh County Economic Development. In addition, Tenax will create eight to 12 additional jobs tied to a new initiative to make the Evergreen facility...

Read More

Mercedes-Benz opens battery factory for Alabama-built electric vehicles

WOODSTOCK, Alabama — Mercedes-Benz today officially opened a new battery plant on the automaker’s Bibb County campus, a few months before the start of production of all-electric Mercedes-EQ vehicles at its Alabama manufacturing center. Mercedes will produce the EQS SUV and EQE SUV in its plant in Alabama, as part of a global push to...

Read More

University programs put spotlight on rural Alabama communities 

Universities across Alabama are engaged in a number of activities that offer promising developments for the state’s rural communities and the key industries that power their economies. For example, Auburn University’s College of Veterinary Medicine is the site of a new program that will study diseases among livestock that pose a threat to public health,...

Read More

Rural Alabama project pipeline sparks new growth — and optimism

ROANOKE, Alabama — Bryant Whaley, the top economic developer for Randolph County, is riding the momentum. Despite the disruptions of a global pandemic, this rural county in eastern Alabama has seen three major corporate growth projects since August 2020, creating over 330 jobs. Whaley, executive director of the Randolph County Economic Development Authority, is optimistic...

Read More

Bonnie Plants opens expanded greenhouse facilities after Alabama expansion

UNION SPRINGS, Alabama — Bonnie Plants, the nation’s largest grower of vegetable and herb plants for home gardens, today unveiled a multimillion-dollar expansion and upgrade of the company’s greenhouse facilities in rural Bullock County. Opelika-based Bonnie Plants said the new growing and distribution facilities in Union Springs are designed to strengthen e-commerce operations and improve production,...

Read More

Humminbird kicks off construction on expansion project at Alabama facility

EUFAULA, Alabama — Humminbird, a leading maker of marine electronics products, officially launched construction work on a multimillion-dollar expansion project at its Eufaula facility to allow the company to meet strong consumer demand for its technologies. The expansion project will increase the production and assembly areas at the Alabama plant by 25%. The project is...

Read More

Priester’s Pecans, landmark Alabama brand, plans to harvest future growth

FORT DEPOSIT, Alabama – For more than 85 years, Priester’s Pecans has helped families across Alabama and beyond celebrate the holidays, and the Lowndes County company continues to write new chapters in its storied history. The pecan processor and handmade candy operation is in the middle of its busiest time of the year, as more...

Read More

Fill your holiday table with bounty from rural Alabama

From juicy turkeys to decadent desserts, Alabama’s rural counties can help fill your holiday table with a tasty spread. Small farms, major food manufacturers and longtime family businesses contribute to the bounty, while also being key drivers of jobs, investment and economic growth in their communities. “The companies behind some of Alabama’s most beloved flavors...

Read More

Ferroglobe unit sets plan to restart silicon metal facility in Selma

SELMA, Alabama — Alabama officials announced today Globe Metallurgical Inc. (GMI),  a subsidiary of Ferroglobe PLC, a leading producer of silicon metal and specialty alloys, is moving forward with a plan to restart an idled silicon metal facility in Selma. The Dallas County facility will employ about 100 people and conduct business with 150 local...

Read More

Bet on rural tech jobs pays off with new Alabama HQ for Provalus

BREWTON, Alabama – Provalus, an information technology services firm that seeks to tap talent in underserved communities, has opened a 55,000-square-foot headquarters in Brewton, a small city located in rural South Alabama. Governor Kay Ivey joined company leaders and local officials at a ceremony this week to mark the official opening of the new Provalus...

Read More

Donated Mercedes SUVs add horsepower to auto training programs

VANCE, Alabama – As Mercedes-Benz U.S. International continues to expand its $6 billion Alabama auto assembly operation, the company is also investing in schools and training programs across the state, including those in rural counties. In turn, the schools and training programs are helping to fill the automaker’s worker pipeline, a crucial part of its...

Read More

Distillery spurs vibrancy, new development in downtown Headland

HEADLAND, Alabama – When Lloyd Keel opened a distillery in Henry County three years ago, he envisioned a hobby business built on his longtime interest in making whiskey. As a boy growing up in rural Southeastern Alabama, Keel and his buddies sometimes ran across the remains of Prohibition-era moonshine stills while they were playing in...

Read More

Growth projects bringing 3,000 jobs to Alabama’s rural counties

Economic development activity in Alabama’s rural counties ticked higher during the first half of 2021, building on growth projects that were launched in these areas last year despite the challenges of a pandemic. Preliminary, year-to-date results from the Alabama Department of Commerce show that projects locating in Alabama’s 40 “targeted” counties will generate at least...

Read More

Lockheed Martin opens ‘digital’ hypersonics factory in rural Lawrence County

COURTLAND, Alabama – At a World War II-era Air Force base in rural Lawrence County, defense contractor Lockheed Martin this month opened one of the nation’s smartest factories, where workers will bring to life futuristic technologies to protect the U.S. Lockheed Martin says the 65,000-square-foot structure in Courtland — known as Missile Assembly Building 4,...

Read More

Rural companies make splash at first ‘Made in Alabama’ Showcase

Companies making great products in small corners of the state stepped into the spotlight at the first installment of the Made in Alabama Showcase, an event last week that featured extraordinary homegrown products. Six of the 12 companies honored by Governor Kay Ivey at the Showcase are based in rural Alabama communities — a fact...

Read More

High-impact projects show growth potential of Northwest Alabama region

GUIN, Alabama – Three rural counties in Northwest Alabama are adding new jobs and investments within their diverse industrial bases, and more economic growth is on the horizon for the region. Fayette, Lamar and Marion counties, which make up the Northwest Alabama Economic Development Alliance, last year announced a combined five new projects and three...

Read More

U.K.-based Ferroglobe eyes restart plan for silicon metal facility in Selma

SELMA, Alabama — Ferroglobe PLC, a leading producer of silicon metal, silicon-based alloys and manganese-based specialty alloys, announced today that its subsidiary, Globe Metallurgical Inc. (GMI), is considering plans to restart its silicon metal facility in Selma. GMI said it is working with Alabama and local representatives on the plans. The company is seeking New...

Read More

Humminbird’s Alabama growth project will add 77 jobs in Eufaula

EUFAULA, Alabama — Humminbird, a leading maker of marine electronics products, announced Tuesday that it is creating over 75 jobs at its plant in Barbour County through an expansion project that will help the company meet strong consumer demand for its depth finders. “Humminbird has grown significantly over the last six years and we expect...

Read More

Lockheed Martin apprenticeship program in Courtland preps students for careers

COURTLAND, Alabama — Perla Chavez and Makayla Chambers took different paths to completing Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Manufacturing Technician Apprenticeship Program (AMTAP) in Lawrence County. Chavez is a recent high school graduate and “techie” who started taking part in robotics and rocketry competitions in middle school. Chambers was a full-time art student pursuing a graphic design...

Read More

Wellborn Cabinet launches $15M expansion, creating 200 jobs in Ashland

ASHLAND, Alabama — Governor Kay Ivey joined the leaders of Wellborn Cabinet Inc. today to formally announce a $15 million expansion project that will ultimately create over 200 jobs at the company’s plant in rural Clay County. Wellborn, a family-owned maker of kitchen and bath cabinets, said the project expands its manufacturing capabilities in Ashland...

Read More

Sweet Grown initiative connects Alabama farmers to local groceries

Sweet Grown Alabama has launched a new effort to help the state’s farmers sell more of their produce in local grocery stores. The nonprofit foundation, which promotes Alabama’s farming industry, is working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries and five local grocers and distributors across the state. Sweet...

Read More

Westwater Resources plans first U.S. graphite processing plant in Alabama

MONTGOMERY, Alabama — Westwater Resources Inc. announced plans today to build a first-of-its-kind advanced graphite processing plant in Coosa County, putting Alabama at the forefront in the production of an essential material in batteries that power electrical vehicles, electronics and other green energy products and equipment. Westwater said its Alabama Graphite Products LLC subsidiary plans...

Read More

Ashland’s Williams Fire launches $1 million expansion as growth sparks

ASHLAND, Alabama – When the emergency call comes in, the fire trucks must be well-equipped and always ready to roll. For many communities in Alabama and Georgia, Matt Williams is the guy who helps make sure the fire rigs are prepared for the job. His family-owned company in Ashland, Williams Fire Apparatus, has long specialized...

Read More

Mohawk Industries plans to add 130 jobs, yarn production at Alabama plant

ROANOKE, Alabama — Mohawk Industries plans to introduce yarn production at its Roanoke manufacturing facility, creating 130 jobs in the Randolph County community and expanding the company’s investment in the region. “Our yarn facilities are very important, as they start our carpet manufacturing process,” Todd Shail, Mohawk’s senior vice president of manufacturing, said in an...

Read More

Trachte plans expansion at Alabama facility, creating 70 jobs in Vernon

VERNON, Alabama — Trachte Building Systems, an industry-leading manufacturer of steel self-storage systems, announced plans to expand its Roof Mart facility in Northwest Alabama with a project that will create 70 jobs in Vernon over the next three years. Sun Prairie, Wisconsin-based Trachte (pronounced Trock-tee) plans to invest over $11.5 million in building improvements and...

Read More

Andalusia airport gives lift to Southeast Alabama aerospace hub

ANDALUSIA, Alabama – Covington County’s South Alabama Regional Airport has become a busy hub for aviators traveling throughout the Southeastern U.S. The airport has a heliport that provides hot and cold refueling services to civilian and military helicopters, as well as an airfield café that brings in hundreds of pilots daily. In addition, the airport’s...

Read More

In rural Alabama’s workshops and plants, quality products spring to life

Alabama’s rural counties are the source of some of the state’s most distinctive products, from handcrafted, all-natural items for health and home to innovative technologies that are charting the future for business and industry. “Rural Alabama is making a remarkable impression both at home and beyond our state’s borders,” said Greg Canfield, Secretary of the...

Read More

CGI marks 10 years of growth at its IT Delivery Center in Troy

TROY, Alabama – Canada-based CGI is marking the 10th anniversary of the opening the company’s IT Delivery Center in Pike County, which through collaboration with state and local agencies and academic institutions has grown to employ 285 local professionals. In an announcement today, CGI said it selected the Troy location because of the area’s quality...

Read More

Bonnie Plants plans greenhouse projects, e-commerce upgrades in Alabama

UNION SPRINGS, Alabama — Bonnie Plants, the nation’s largest grower of vegetable and herb plants for home gardens, announced plans today to upgrade and expand its greenhouse facilities in Bullock County with a multimillion-dollar project that will improve production and strengthen its e-commerce operations. “This new operation will be one of the most state-of-the-art facilities...

Read More

Economic development report card shows $4.8 billion in 2020 investment

MONTGOMERY — Despite the challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic, economic development activity across Alabama in 2020 generated close to $5 billion in new capital investment and almost 10,000 job commitments, Governor Kay Ivey announced today. With significant growth projects recorded in key strategic industrial sectors, Governor Ivey said the activity will strengthen the foundations...

Read More

Alabama-grown: Chilton County farmer cultivates her dream

THORSBY, Alabama – Taylor Boozer Hatchett didn’t grow up on a farm, but she has a passion for tending the land and sharing its bounty like many who did. Her father, Bobby Boozer, worked with the Alabama Cooperative Extension System and Auburn University and spent his 26-year career helping farmers throughout the state, particularly fruit...

Read More

Construction kicks off on Coastal Growers’ $87 million peanut shelling facility

ATMORE, Alabama – Governor Kay Ivey joined Escambia County officials in Atmore today to mark the start of construction on the Coastal Growers LLC peanut shelling facility, which will provide a major boost to peanut farmers in the region. The company — owned by a cooperative of farmers, most of them residing in Alabama –...

Read More

With roots in family farm, growth blooms for Moulton’s Red Land Cotton

MOULTON, Alabama – Red Land Cotton is expanding its home base in Lawrence County, as demand is surging for its heirloom-inspired linens. The company completed construction of a 25,000-square-foot warehouse, distribution center and storefront in December and officially began operations there earlier this year. The move follows a year of strong growth for Red Land...

Read More

Packaging Corp. of America plans $440 million project at Alabama mill

JACKSON, Alabama – Packaging Corp. of America (PCA) plans to launch a three-year, $440 million project to permanently convert a paper machine at its mill in Clarke County to produce linerboard used for corrugated packaging. Lake Forest, Illinois-based PCA announced that it discontinued the production of uncoated freesheet, used for copy paper and other applications,...

Read More

Department of Defense launches aerospace research center at Tuskegee University

TUSKEGEE, Alabama — The U.S. Department of Defense has launched an Aerospace Education Research and Innovation Center (AERIC) at Alabama’s Tuskegee University, enhancing research in critical areas and expanding the future technical talent pipeline for the industry. In an announcement, the DOD said Tuskegee’s AERIC will support two-year research projects in the areas of fatigue...

Read More

Developer: How rural Chambers County’s comeback offers lessons

Few people understand the mechanics of rural economic development better than Valerie Gray, the executive director of the Chambers County Development Authority. After all, she and her team helped engineer a reversal of the county’s fortunes after its traditional industry imploded. Gray has led the CCDA for over 22 years. During her tenure, she has...

Read More

Aircraft maintenance company plans operation at Selma’s Craig Field

SELMA, Alabama — Craig Field Executive Director Jim Corrigan announced that City Jet/Turbine Worx plans to open an aircraft maintenance operation and dispatch facility on Craig Field, a public airport and industrial facility. With the newly signed lease agreement, City Jet/Turbine Worx will operate on the flight line in Hangar 251 and create approximately 30...

Read More

SHOWA glove factory’s growth plans find perfect fit in Fayette

FAYETTE, Alabama – For Mike Kimple, director of manufacturing at the SHOWA Group  factory in this northwest Alabama city, the mission is clear for the nation’s only domestic producer of single-use nitrile gloves. “We’re just trying to get every single glove we can out the door to fight this pandemic,” Kimple said. Every day, SHOWA’s...

Read More

Commerce launches ‘RurAL’ campaign to promote rural Alabama

The Alabama Department of Commerce is launching a new digital marketing campaign, including an online site, that focuses on rural Alabama as a great place for doing business and the source of valuable products in demand around the world. The centerpiece of the “RurAL” campaign is a content-rich website that showcases the business advantages of...

Read More

Foreign investment sparks growth in rural Alabama communities

Many folks may be unaware of the advantages of doing business in Alabama’s rural counties, but corporate decision-makers from around the world are fully tuned in to the possibilities. Foreign direct investment has been a vital ingredient in Alabama’s economic growth in recent years – and that is true for rural parts of the state...

Read More