A new business aims to put down roots in ‘Independence Industrial Park,’ resurrecting activity in the city’s long-dormant Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone.
The park is located on the north side of Hwy. 31 off Fritz Swanson Road. The TIRZ is significantly larger, more than 300 acres, encompassing the park as well as property along Hwy. 42 plus 12 blocks downtown.
Approved by council members in August 2010, the TIRZ was officially launched in early 2011. Such zones are used by municipalities (and other entities) to finance infrastructure and other improvements through tax increment financing – development in the present paid for by future tax gains.
“When we created the TIRZ, this was the major driving force behind it, this particular industrial park,” Kilgore Planning & Zoning Director Carol Windham said, “We paid up a certain amount of money for the infrastructure and it will be repaid as the park develops. The road was built, the infrastructure was put in, but nothing has really developed out there until recently.”
With renewed interest in the industrial park, the developers are finishing out key elements.
“They sold a piece of property out there for the development of a truck repair shop. They had to finish getting everything done and dedicated for this small development. There’s definitely plenty of property out there to be developed.”
After passing inspection by Kilgore Public Works Director Clay Evers, the project was ready for final platting in September, approved by a unanimous vote from Kilgore City Council members Sept. 24.