CLEARFIELD – The board of directors for the Clearfield County Economic Development Corp. (CCEDC) recently announced several updates about public and private-sector development projects that its staff is administering throughout the region.
Efforts to implement the Howe’s Leather Brownfield remediation project in Curwensville Borough are well under way. However, a minor setback ensued as a result of the May 2 fire, which has been deemed arson. The fire is still under investigation and the CCEDC continues to work with Earthmovers Unlimited Inc. and the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to facilitate the demolition and sludge lagoon remediation in late June.
Pre-construction meetings were recently administered and mobilization and site preparation is slated to commence June 23.
The CCEDC has made significant strides this spring with multiple land acquisitions and environmental due diligence along the Clearfield Riverfront Project in Clearfield Borough.
Since December, the CCEDC has acquired the former Tool Shed Property, Rishel Construction building and the Catholic Diocese men’s shelter along the riverfront.
Rob Swales, CCEDC chief executive officer, stated, “We are extremely pleased to have the opportunity to work with local businesses and landowners along the riverfront for this major redevelopment initiative. Mr. & Mrs. Reed, Mr. Rishel and the Catholic Diocese have been extremely supportive in our efforts and have used this opportunity to expand their businesses at new locations in the area. This has been a win-win for the community as well as the businesses.”
The new Tool Shed location is double the size with greater highway visibility along Clearfield-Curwensville Highway in Lawrence Township. Rishel Contracting is in the process of constructing a brand new facility along Rockton Mountain Highway with greater capacity for expansion and highway visibility.
The Catholic Diocese men’s shelter has relocated to a new facility along Front Street with improved amenities versus the former Water Street location. The CCEDC coordinated efforts with the Catholic Charities to occupy the Water Street facility for several months while renovations to the new shelter along Front Street were completed in May.
The CCEDC continues to work with the Novey family regarding the property of the former Novey Metal Recycling Center on Williams Street for the purposes of creating a public park and gateway entrance to riverfront and Master Site Plan.
Swales recently met with a representative from Core Distinction Group to discuss a hotel market and feasibility study on behalf of the CCEDC. CDG visited the greater Clearfield area to assist with this study.
The findings of this study will be utilized to determine whether a boutique-style hotel concept is viable along the riverfront, as well as provide detailed financial analysis for investment and recruitment purposes. If feasible, the study will be used to attract a private developer to implement the construction and development of a boutique-style hotel in downtown Clearfield along the riverfront. Interested developers are encouraged to contact the CCEDC.
On May 14, the CCEDC co-sponsored an event with the state Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED). This event featured DCED Secretary C. Alan Walker as the guest speaker and moderator.
Walker’s specialized staff and governor’s office were present to field questions relating to DCED’s role with business retention and business attraction. The event consisted of a Clearfield community roundtable discussion with many local businesses present, including several Clearfield Area High School students in attendance.
The public asked Walker and his staff questions about the types of programs DCED offers and how the local community and businesses could obtain assistance from DCED relating to many facets of municipal consolidation, community and private-sector economic development.
Swales reported a new start-up business and manufacturer, Race Street Brew Works, is currently under construction with an anticipated opening mid-summer of this year. Race Street recently obtained a RLF Loan from the Clearfield County Industrial Authority (CCIA) to assist with the start-up of a micro-brewery located at 511 Spruce St., Clearfield.
Paul McCloskey, CCEDC vice president of Energy and Business Development, reported the CCEDC will host a Foreign Direct Investment event in the North Central Region on June 24-25. McCloskey stated there will be 13 representatives from other countries in attendance.
“This is a huge opportunity for the CCEDC to showcase the assets of the County and Central Pennsylvania to foreign consultants. They represent industrial clients from other countries looking to establish a presence in the United States,” stated Swales.
“Not only will we be hosting the event and providing tours to showcase the opportunities our area has to offer, comprehensive electronic packets will be disseminated to the representatives to pass along to their clients, touting our infrastructure, coal, timber, clay, sandstone and natural gas reserve.
“These are the essential building blocks for growth. We are fortunate to have the capacity to show industrial prospects how we can save energy and resource costs for their clients by doing business in Clearfield County.”