SHAWNEE TOWNSHIP — On Thursday, the Allen County Board of Commissioners heard from the Shawnee Township Trustees and the Allen County Port Authority about the expansion and improvement of Gateway Shawnee Industrial Park. They also approved to name the main road after their late colleague, former commissioner Jay Begg.
Jay Begg Parkway will eventually become the main entrance to the park, which is located just past Commerce Parkway on McClain Road. The 70-acre property doesn’t look like much at the moment, but a $1.2 million investment from the Port Authority could turn the location into Allen County’s next big industry hub.
“It’s one of the number one sites in Allen County because of its location,” said Allen Economic Development Group director of business development Cynthia Leis. “It’s visible from I-75, we now have infrastructure with the 1,000 foot roadway into the park. Infrastructure is in place, and quite frankly, this land is shovel ready.”
One company has already begun construction within the park. Randall Bearings, Inc. is expected to have its new building, which will be on Jay Begg Parkway, be operational by the start of 2022.
Future development of the park could bring in a range of new businesses, depending on who decides to build on the property.
“It depends on the size of business that comes in,” said Shawnee Township Trustee Russ Holly. “If you have a large business, let’s say larger than Randall Bearings, they might consume a lot of the property. If you have smaller ones, then you can have probably eight or ten smaller businesses or smaller industrial complexes.”
Commissioner Cory Noonan said that Jay Begg was instrumental in economic development during his time as commissioner, so adding a parkway that bears his name is a perfect way to honor his legacy.
“Economic development was something that he was very involved in, and the industrial park,” he said. “It’s a great recognition to one of the strongest leaders that we have had here in Allen County. (I) appreciate the Port Authority, Shawnee Township and the county engineer and their work on making this dedication. It’ll be nice to say, ‘hey, we’ll meet out on Jay Begg Parkway.’”
Reach Trevor Hubert at 567-242-0398