“We are very excited—this will be a huge project for the park,” said Kelly Violette, executive director of the Tomball Economic Development Corporation.
Canadian-based Packers Plus operates three locations in Houston and additional sites around the world. The company will occupy 17.38 acres of the total 85 acres available for development at the 120-acre park, Violette said. The $21 million facility will consist of a 237,000-square-foot manufacturing building, a 50,000-square-foot research and development structure and a multistory 40,000-square-foot corporate office.
City officials made the announcement at a Tomball City Council meeting April 20.
“The company has been in the U.S. for eight years and has grown dramatically over that period of time,” Violette said. “Given the anticipated future growth of the company, Packers Plus desires to relocate its Houston-based operations to a single campus location.”
Over the next five years, Packers Plus is projected to create 172 jobs at the facility. By 2025 the company plans to staff 353 full-time employees in Tomball, including those who relocate from existing Houston facilities.
The TEDC projects the company will bring in $3.54 million in additional revenue to the city over the next decade with sales taxes, property taxes, hotel occupancy taxes and other fees, Violette said. The city anticipates its costs to serve the facility will total $1.5 million over the same time span to supply utilities and other municipal services, she said.
Over the next 10 years, the city expects to see a $1.4 million net benefit from the facility, Violette said. The TEDC approved an economic development reform agreement April 14 to provide $263,011 in incentives to help Packers Plus develop its site in the coming months, she said.
The company submitted a request to the city for a possible 10-year, 100 percent tax abatement that is estimated at $665,503, according to TEDC documents. City Council approved a resolution April 20 with the intent to participate in the tax abatement and establish guidelines for granting tax abatements in a reinvestment zone to be created in Tomball.
The TEDC has been working to bring the company to the park since July. The park’s location at the corner of Holderrieth and Hufsmith-Kohrville roads with direct access to the new Tomball Tollway helped attract the campus to the area, Violette said.
“[Packers Plus officials] are hoping to close [on the facility] between June and July timeframe,” Violette said. “They do have a 90-day due diligence period [since the contract was approved by the TEDC April 14]. I know they are wanting to start construction on Phase 1 toward the end [of] summer.”
City Council is expected to vote on the construction bids for the new facility at the May 18 meeting. The first phase of construction on the research and development structure is scheduled for completion by March 2016, and the two subsequent building phases will be completed in the following two years, Violette said.