As plans for its Research Forest Tract and holdings straddling I-16 move slowly along, the Effingham Industrial Development Authority is trying to squeeze some available sites out of its current industrial park.
Citing a continuing interest in sites throughout the Coastal Empire, IDA CEO John Henry urged IDA board members to begin work on the sprayfield at the Effingham Industrial Park.
“There’s another flurry of interest in industrial sites,” he said. “The only marketable site is the sprayfield.”
The sprayfield is about 60 acres and has been used by Springfield for its wastewater treatment process. The city is moving off that land, Henry said.
“We are in the process of getting it on the market,” Henry said. “We may need to get that site ready.”
Grading and deep borings may need to be done on the site. Chance Raehn of Thomas and Hutton Engineering said the deep borings of the soil could help keep Effingham one step ahead of the competition.
“One thing we noticed in the flurry of the last nine to 12 months is that most of our sites don’t have deep borings,” he said. “Most manufacturing facilities have either very heavy machinery or very heavy production, and they need deep foundations.”
Soil borings to determine the quality of the dirt for warehousing and distribution facilities don’t go as deep, Raehn said, because they don’t require as much of a foundation.
The IDA agreed to spend up to $22,000 for the work.
“This gets us started,” Henry said. “This gets the geotechnical work started. That in itself is a marketing tool. The more information we have, the better off we’ll be.”
Henry said the IDA is actively marketing the site to prospects.