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SOUTH POINT, Ohio — The 13th shell building at The Point industrial park has received $2.5 million in Ohio rural industrial park loan funds, said Lydia Mihalik, director of the Ohio Development Services Agency.

Mihalik, who will take over as director of the Ohio Department of Development at the end of the month, was among about 50 people on hand Thursday for the groundbreaking of the planned 60,000-square-foot spec building.

“Economic development is a team sport,” Mihalik said. “All of the hard work is done at the local level. You have a lot going on here. It’s awesome to do groundbreakings, but ribbon-cuttings are even better.”

Jeremy Clay, director of the industrial park, said demolition and site work on the project would begin next week.

The state loan program was designed to help bring jobs to Ohio, Mihalik said.

“We are looking forward to more programs like this one,” she said.

Ohio has weathered the downturn following the pandemic and is doing well now, she said.

“We will continue to invest in programs like this,” she added.

She also credited the work by Bill Dingus, executive director for the Lawrence Economic Development Corp., which is developing the industrial park.

“We have great local people who are making things happen,” Mihalik said.

The industrial park employs some 800 people on a 500-acre site off U.S. 52 and County Road 1. Of the dozen other spec buildings, all but one, a 30,000-square-foot building, is occupied, Clay said.

“We have a couple leads” on customers, he said.

The new spec building could be expanded to some 200,000 square feet and is designed to have cranes, Clay said. It should be finished by next spring.

“It’s amazing to see how (the industrial park) has developed over the years,” said State Rep. Jason Stephens, R-93rd District.

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