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Business & Economy

West Kentucky Leaders Break Ground on New Murray Spec Building

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Rob Canning, WKMS
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Local officials are hopeful a new spec building north of Murray could help bring western Kentucky onto the national and global stage for business investment. 

Local government and community leaders from across the Jackson Purchase were in Calloway County Tuesday for the groundbreaking of the 60,000 square foot Murray Spec Building Number 1, the first facility to grace the new West Industrial Park on US 641.  

Josh Vernon, lead architect with Urbana Fabric firm in Murray, say the design of the building needed to stand out from other manufacturing facilities.

"It needed to stand as a gateway to the community of Murray, being that it's located on the north side on 641 and also as an introduction for future development in the park," said Vernon. "It's a great example for industrial development in Murray and not just having it be a facility that was purely functional, but have some aesthetic contributions as well."

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Last year, German automotive parts manufacturer iwisopened its $12.5 million facility adjacent to the West Industrial Park.

Former 1st District State Senator Ken Winters spoke at the ceremony.  He says seeing economic leaders from surrounding counties come together shows how closely tied the region is towards supporting collective growth.

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Credit Rob Canning, WKMS
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Fmr. Sen. Ken Winters

"Most all the region was in my senate district when I was in the senate, we knew about each other’s needs and so forth, and us and others lending a hand as we come to help them, as the boat rises, everyone benefits from it.”       

The facility is looking to house a company needing medium manufacturing operations like metal fabrication and plastics as well as provide office space.  

Murray Calloway Chamber of Commerce President Aaron Dail says the facility is a good recruitment and retainment tool for other Murray businesses as it shows continued economic strength while the site develops.

“Obviously you’ll see a lot of site work and construction, a lot of visits from folks looking to see what the building will look like, how their potential home is going to be in Murray and Calloway County," said Dail. "So we’re growing, we had one new business start every 2.2 days last year, and interested to see the pace of growth continue.”

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Credit Rob Canning, WKMS
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"It shows that we're taking matters into our own hands, creating economic opportunities that had we not worked to develop a project like this we'd be basically be standing still," said Calloway County Judge Executive Larry Elkins. "The real important factor is that we've shown a consistent growth in our community. But economic growth, enhanced speed limits, transportation opportunities and those things are very important too."

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Credit Rob Canning, WKMS
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Republican Congressional candidate James Comer with Murray Mayor Jack Rose

The Murray Spec Building #1 is expected complete next year.

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