Advanced Manufacturing: Manufacturing Gets Smarter, Faster

Smart sensors and digital process controls are poised to exponentially improve the efficiency of U.S. advanced manufacturing.

By the BF Staff
From the September/October 2017 Issue

New technologies and business models have the heavy/discrete manufacturing industry on the verge of an innovative new period that promises greater productivity and the potential for lower costs, according to a recent report prepared by GE. Supply chain models are adding efficiencies, and smart sensors and automation technologies are making factories more efficient and safer than ever before. Recognizing the importance of this innovation, industry, academia and governments are investing heavily in research and development to help national manufacturers become more competitive in 21st century manufacturing.

The predominant theme in manufacturing remains the concerted effort to move manufacturing to its smarter, more efficient, more innovative future. Here’s a peek at what’s driving change in 2017:

The factory of the future: Tesla’s “Gigafactory,” may represent not just what future factories look like, but how companies approach their entire manufacturing process.

Innovation partnerships: The Smart Manufacturing Innovation Institute (SMII) is an advanced manufacturing hub intended to drive advances in smart sensors and digital process controls that could dramatically, even exponentially, improve the efficiency of U.S. advanced manufacturing.

Data-driven manufacturing: Cheap and ubiquitous sensing has afforded an unprecedented ability to gather huge amounts of granular process data in real-time. These sensors, along with the data they generate and the analytics tools to process that data, make up the connected network of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), and are critical elements of the next generation factory.

The changing workforce: Automation is changing the mix of jobs in and around factories. Much of the traditionally repetitive or dangerous work is being automated–driving the need for new sets of skills, especially for technicians and programmers. So, while some jobs are becoming obsolete, the reality is that automation does not always mean fewer jobs, it merely requires different jobs.

Emerging technologies and digital transformation will allow players to jockey for competitive advantage through innovation in time-to-market, speed of innovation, improvement in process and reduction of costs.


Thanks in part to its pro-business policies, strong workforce and trade infrastructure, Florida ranks among the nation’s top 10 states for manufacturing. More than 331,000 Floridians work in the state’s manufacturing industries, and its training schools, community colleges and universities are among the nation’s top producers of STEM graduates. So while the talent base in Florida is strong today, tomorrow’s workforce looks even brighter.

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BRIDG, the world’s first industry-led smart sensor consortium, in Central Florida. (Photo: Enterprise Florida)

Taking advantage of that strong educational and training foundation is the new BRIDG (Building the Innovation Development Gap) facility at NeoCity in Osceola County. The 109,000-square-foot building has two clean rooms built on a 6-million-pound, 3.5-foot thick elevated slab to support complex research tools with minimal vibration. It is only the third facility of its kind built in the United States.

At the opening of the BRIDG facility in April, CEO Chester Kennedy said, “Just one year ago, NeoCity was an open field and today it is BRIDG’s new home. We have a state-of-the-art facility to help us bring to light new and exciting ideas for our partners. We are thankful to Osceola County, the University of Central Florida and the Florida High Tech Corridor Council for their visionary leadership and invaluable support. Osceola County is becoming a hub for high-tech jobs and innovation, and it is amazing to witness this growth every day.”

In Florida’s Panhandle, GKN Aerospace will open its first location in the state. The new manufacturing facility will create 170 jobs and invest more than $50 million in the community. GKN is one of the world’s largest suppliers to the international aviation industry.

Mike Grunza, CEO of GKN Aerospace’s Aerostructures North America business said, “This investment emphasizes our commitment to manufacturing in North America, as this new world-class facility will create jobs and strengthen our competitive position in the U.S. aerospace market for the future. The excellent support we have received from Bay County EDA, Governor Rick Scott’s office, higher educational partners and The St. Joe Company made Florida an ideal location for GKN.”

The project was made possible through partnerships between state and local economic development and workforce training organizations, as well as local educational leadership.

“The University is proud to provide key support for GKN Aerospace’s expansion, which will help strengthen, grow and diversify the region’s economy,” said Brice Harris, assistant vice president for research and economic opportunity at the University of West Florida. “This project and others supported by the Industry Recruitment, Retention and Expansion Fund demonstrate our commitment to attracting high-paying jobs to Northwest Florida.”

In May, Anheuser-Busch celebrated the opening of its expanded manufacturing facility in Jacksonville. The new aluminum bottle manufacturing line at the company’s Metal Container Corporation (MCC) facility invested $175 million and created 75 jobs.

Richard Pyle, Jacksonville plant manager, said, “Anheuser-Busch and MCC have been proud members of the Jacksonville community for nearly 50 years, and we are pleased to celebrate the grand opening of this new aluminum bottle line, which has not only given us the ability to increase production of the popular aluminum bottle, but has allowed us to employ even more Floridians. It’s important to remember, however, that projects of this size and importance don’t happen without great partners, and we have great partners in Governor Rick Scott, Mayor Lenny Curry and all of our state and local elected officials—without them this project would not have been possible.”

Innovation and advanced manufacturing have been synonymous with Florida’s Space Coast for decades, and the region continues to be a leader in the global aerospace industry.

Earlier this year, OneWeb Satellites broke ground on their 100,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Exploration Park, just south of Kennedy Space Center. The $85 million facility will create 250 high-tech manufacturing and engineering jobs.

OneWeb will design, build and launch an extensive network of small, low earth orbit satellites that will enable the delivery of Internet services to every corner of the Earth at a low cost. These micro satellites will be manufactured at the Space Coast facility and will be mass produced utilizing fewer components, thus making them lighter and easier to launch.

Brian Holz, CEO of OneWeb Satellites, said, “Florida is an excellent location for our high-volume satellite manufacturing facility. The State of Florida and Space Florida really understood our business needs and gave us an outstanding offer to locate in Exploration Park. Our high-volume satellite production uses many of the same technologies as aircraft production and Florida has become a center of excellence for both aviation and space related technologies. We will leverage much of the local aerospace capability expanding opportunity in the Space Coast region, and we also anticipate many of our suppliers to co-locate operations near our facility. The facility will be a big part of our ability to dramatically lower satellite costs for OneWeb and other customers as we grow our business.”

Consistently ranked one of the best states for business, Florida is committed to keeping regulatory requirements and business taxes low. That, along with a strong economy and zero personal state income tax, make it a great place to do business. For more information on growing your business in Florida, visit


As automakers cut weight to improve their vehicles’ fuel mileage, the demand for light, high-strength aluminum products and parts has surged.

Aluminum, due to its very nature, is less forgiving than steel. So meeting the need for massive quantities of premium-quality flat-rolled sheet—used for body panels—and lightweight parts such as diecast housings, pulleys and brackets, as well as extruded mechanical, structural and trim pieces—requires more high-tech machinery and operators with leading-edge knowledge.

Craig Bouchard, left, CEO of startup aluminum producer Braidy Industries Inc., accepts a framed gift of Kentucky’s highest honors from Gov. Matt Bevin during the April 26 announcement of Braidy’s $1.3 billion aluminum rolling mill. The company plans to construct its 2.5 million square-foot mill on more than 300 acres (below) near South Shore, KY. (Photo: Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development)


That’s where Kentucky shines.

Already a top state in aluminum-production capacity, Kentucky boasts an auto-parts supplier network of more than 500 facilities and a demonstrated commitment to training the next generation of advanced manufacturing specialists, tailor fit for the needs of individual employers.

While a wealth of industries and companies are adding advanced manufacturing jobs in Kentucky—including healthcare products and pharmaceutical production, factory robotics systems fabrication and integration, aerospace composites, chemicals engineering and production to name a few—none is growing as fast as aluminum.

In the Bluegrass State, companies announced 92 new-facility or expansion projects since the beginning of 2014, according to the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development. Those projects total more than $2.6 billion in announced corporate investment in fewer than four years. That’s well above the approximately $1 billion in aluminum-related projects announced 2001-2013.

A major initiative of Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin and his administration is establishing Kentucky as an engineering and manufacturing hub of excellence for the nation. The state already boasts more than 4,400 manufacturing facilities that, in total, create 19.3 percent of its GDP, far more than the nation’s 12.2 percent of manufacturing-related GDP. And a number of initiatives, programs and advantages are moving Kentucky toward that goal.

Terry Gill, the state’s economic development secretary, can explain in detail the factors that make Kentucky the clear choice for corporate investment and expansion, especially among advanced manufacturers.

Of the many reasons, one in particular stands out.

“In January, the General Assembly passed and Governor Matt Bevin signed right-to-work legislation. That put Kentucky into the mix of more conversations about new-location projects,” he said. “We’re seeing more interest from companies and we’re being contacted about considerably larger projects as well.”

That new legislation turned quick results. This spring, the state landed a whale of a new project that will practically embody the juncture of aluminum production and advanced manufacturing.

In April, Gov. Bevin and industrialist Craig Bouchard announced Braidy Industries will build a $1.3 billion aluminum rolling mill near Ashland in northeast Kentucky. The 550-job mill will pay an average of $38 per hour including benefits. Braidy Industries also is expected to create 1,000 construction jobs and spearhead an economic recovery in Eastern Kentucky.

As the nation’s first greenfield project of its kind in a generation, the Braidy Industries mill will use the most efficient, environmental responsible and technically advanced equipment of any aluminum plant globally. Its aluminum will supply the automotive, aerospace and defense industries.

During the announcement ceremony, Bouchard, the company’s chairman and CEO, said Kentucky’s passage of right-to-work legislation was key in his decision to locate the plant.

  • Toyota announced in April it will invest $1.33 billion in its Georgetown, KY plant, the company’s largest plant globally. The project includes a new paint shop and comprehensive equipment and technology upgrades to produce lighter, stronger and more efficient vehicles. The plant began production of the all-new 2018 Camry in June.
  • In April, Kobe Aluminum Automotive Products, in Bowling Green, announced a 129-job, $51-million project, its seventh Kentucky expansion. The facility manufactures lightweight aluminum parts, including upper and lower control arms and steering knuckles. The plant’s previous expansions total $293 million and it currently employs 500 Kentucky residents full-time.
  • Tri-Arrows Aluminum in May said it will add a $125 million cold-rolling line at its Logan Aluminum plant near Russellville, in southwestern Kentucky. The investment will create 60 full-time jobs and enable the mill to produce auto-body sheet.
  • Ford in June announced it will invest $900 million into its Kentucky Truck Plant (KTP) in Louisville to support production of the 2018 aluminum-alloy bodied Lincoln Navigator and Ford Expedition.

In addition to right-to-work, the list of Kentucky’s attributes combine to create gravitational pull for advanced manufacturing operations of many types.

There’s the ongoing workforce-training revolution that includes new and expanded apprenticeship programs. The $100 million Work Ready Skills Initiative creates new and fortifies existing local training programs tailored to the needs of local employers. The Work Ready Kentucky Scholarship covers tuition for Kentucky students enrolling in nearly 1,000 certificate and degree programs in five, high-demand sectors.

A leading apprenticeship program, the Kentucky Federation for Advanced Manufacturing, or KY FAME, expanded to 10 chapters statewide this year. Students spend two days per week in classes at a local Kentucky Community and Technical College, and three days a week with their sponsoring manufacturer. The KY FAME model trains students to fit the specific needs of employers. The program boasts 225 member companies and 650 students enrolled for fall 2017.

Toyota recently donated an engineering laboratory in Northern Kentucky for a new STEAM-based education center to serve the Northern Kentucky/Greater Cincinnati region. The Ignite Institute at Roebling Innovation Center will include the best aspects of innovative schools around the country. The Ignite Institute is on pace to welcome up to 1,000 students, grades 9-12, beginning in the 2019-2020 school year.

Recent and upcoming policy changes are improving Kentucky’s business climate and helping to create new advanced manufacturing jobs. The General Assembly passed and Gov. Bevin signed legislation abolishing prevailing wage, promoting public-private partnerships and reforming the education system. Later this year, Gov. Bevin plans to convene a special session to take up tax and state pension reform. The Red Tape Reduction Initiative encourages businesspeople, state employees and consumers to identify burdensome regulations and offer suggestions for improvement.

Kentucky holds a top national position in air cargo shipments, offering the UPS Worldport and Centennial ground hub in Louisville, DHL Americas hub in Northern Kentucky and several large FedEx facilities throughout the state. This strong logistics presence allows products to move anywhere in the world virtually overnight.

Natural and infrastructure advantages abound, too. The state’s central location, as a gateway between the American South and Midwest and with easy access to the Northeast and Atlantic Seaboard, is within a day’s drive of two-thirds of the nation’s population and household income. Its moderate climate with predictable weather provides four distinct seasons without the propensity for crippling snowstorms, hurricanes or tornadoes.

Kentucky also offers some of the nation’s lowest rates for industrial power. According to the U.S. Energy Information Agency, Kentucky ranks first among its neighboring competitor states.

Its infrastructure includes 20 interstates and major highways, rail networks, barge traffic on the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, six commercial airports and dozens of regional airports. The state’s transportation network can move products easily and efficiently by air, rail, road and water to all points globally.

And there’s a momentum effect. Businesses seeking a location for aluminum processing or parts production recognize they can take advantage of Kentucky’s existing operations—both for vendors and customers—as well as increase their likelihood of sourcing employees with previous aluminum-industry experience.

With all Kentucky’s advantages combined, automotive production nationally forecast this year to remain at a near-record level, federal fuel economy requirements increasing over the next several years and the aerospace industry growing, the future of Kentucky’s advanced manufacturing industry looks bright.

(The Kentucky section was written by Jack Mazurak.)


Situated in Upstate New York, Oswego County is located centrally to New York City, Boston, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Toronto and Montreal. Yet, Oswego County has more to offer than an attractive location within hours of every major Northeast market.

Oswego County has a highly skilled manufacturing workforce, with welding, fabrication and CNC experience, who are ready to work. The workforce is supported by over 30 institutions of higher learning within 50 miles. These educational institutions work collaboratively with economic development organizations, workforce training centers and industry to train a skilled labor pool for advanced manufacturing. Recently, these partners developed an advanced manufacturing institute where both students and employees are being trained.

Oswego County and Central NY have a robust manufacturing industry providing custom services for industrial, automotive, medical, aeronautics and military applications, as well as providing custom parts, fabrication and prototyping to other area businesses. This network of manufacturers creates a stable supply chain and major competitive advantage.

Oswego County offers convenient access to Interstates 81 and 90 which provide north/south and east/west movement. Over 25 carriers provide both local and long-distance trucking to and from Oswego County. Connecting lines enable transport to every major U.S. market. Local logistics companies provide transloading from truck to rail and offer myriad warehouse storage options, including dry, climate controlled and frozen.

The Port of Oswego, a deep-water port on the southeastern shore of Lake Ontario, provides a major logistical advantage to industry in Oswego County and the Central New York region. As the first port of call and hub in the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway System, it is part of over 2,300 miles of water transportation from Duluth, Minnesota to the Atlantic Ocean. The Port of Oswego provides on-dock rail and truck loading, making for a smooth transition of goods to market. Recent upgrades to the Port’s security system allow the Port to handle high-security shipments. Future expansion includes the development of an inland port.

CSX offers daily rail transportation to Oswego County. Rail service is available throughout the County, with direct access at several sites and industrial parks. With a nearby regional switching yard, CSX provides access to more than 21,000 miles of track in 23 states and the Canadian provinces of Ontario and Quebec, plus 70 ocean, lake and river ports. Coupled with nationwide transloading and warehousing, CSX makes rail a very viable transportation option for Oswego County businesses.

Syracuse Hancock International Airport is within minutes of Oswego County. In addition to worldwide passenger transport, Hancock has facilities for air freight transport, which includes a 53,000-square-foot cargo building. The Oswego County Airport boasts two up-to 5,200-foot paved runways which are ideal for business, industry and private aviation.

Oswego County has many options for multimodal transport of raw materials, parts and products. The various combinations of transport are ideal for materials import and product export. As a designated Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ), Oswego County is designed for the convenient and cost effective production of goods.

With a strong economic base in manufacturing, Oswego County is equipped with modern industrial infrastructure, including heavy power and gas. Coupled with plentiful water and wastewater options, this infrastructure provides flexibility for light- to heavy-industrial uses.

Many shovel ready sites are available in Oswego County. Within the industrial parks, all sites have utilities and other necessary infrastructure in place. Some sites within the parks have had comprehensive site profiles performed. These profiles detail the site conditions, available infrastructure and provide development options suitable for that site. They expedite the selection process by eliminating much of the due diligence work for the potential purchaser.

In recent years, several advanced manufacturing companies have invested in Oswego County. Three of these projects, presented below, represent an investment of over $400 million and the creation of over 240 new jobs.

Novelis Corporation, the world’s largest manufacturer of rolled aluminum, has had two consecutive expansion projects which added three new aluminum finishing lines and an aluminum recycling center to meet rising demands from the automotive industry.

The Fulton Companies, maker of high-efficiency commercial boilers, added 112,000 square feet onto their existing manufacturing and corporate headquarters to grow their manufacturing capabilities and existing product line. The expanded facility also houses a 10,000-square-foot R&D center.

BioSpherix, manufacturer of cytocentric cell incubation and processing systems, expanded in Oswego County by acquiring the 40,000-square-foot closed elementary school in the Village of Parish. The multimillion-dollar project converted the school into a state-of-the-art R&D and manufacturing facility.

Oswego County’s geographic location, skilled workforce, collaborative support system and modern infrastructure provide major competitive advantages for advanced manufacturing companies.

For more information about Oswego County, contact L. Michael Treadwell, Executive Director of Operation Oswego County, Inc., at (315)343-1545 or


What makes York County, NE unique from a business perspective? The County is working aggressively to Raise the Bar (Build Attract Retain), and invites businesses to take a look at a community that is coming together to grow. There are many competitive advantages, but the location, agricultural assets and workforce are three driving forces in the economy. There are available sites appropriate for rail served, warehousing, distribution, manufacturing and commercial. The City of York and York County Development Corporation (YCDC) has a shovel ready 34-acre site adjacent to a rail spur. All sites are within five miles of Interstate 80, and the Burlington Northern Santa Fe mainline travels east/west, which gives rail access to a bevy of manufacturers, agri-business and logistic companies alike. York County, NE offers a pro-business climate in a right-to-work state. A strong work ethic and a central location make it an ideal place to start or expand your business.

York County’s location has been key for both businesses and workforce. I-80 intersects with U.S. Highway 81, otherwise known as the Pan-American Expressway Corridor, allowing for travel in any direction. Highway 81 provides quick and easy access into Canada, as well as to the Ports in Texas. Metropolitan areas within six hours of the County include Kansas City, Denver, Des Moines, Oklahoma City and Sioux Falls. In fact, from York County, shipments can be trucked to 90 percent of the lower 48 states in two days or less.

In today’s competitive workforce market, it is great to say York County has a solid and loyal workforce with characteristics that stand out from the average community. York County is a small, rural community with a population of around 14,000. However, the location creates a labor pool of over 200,000 potential employees. In fact, York County has become a magnet for the commuting workforce with just over 40 percent commuting from outside of the county to work here. York is home to York College, a four-year liberal arts institution, which recruits over 75 percent of their students from outside of Nebraska. Many of the York College alumni make York County their home after graduation because students love the feel of a small town while being located near city amenities. Three other colleges and four community college campuses within an hour provide additional access to graduates for businesses to recruit from. In addition, the Midwest is known for employees having a great work ethic and understanding of hard work, and York County fits into this category.

In April 2017, YCDC hired a Development Coordinator who is responsible for Talent Recruitment (workforce strategies) and housing development. This position was created to help ease a housing shortage which will help expand the local workforce by making it easier to relocate incoming workforce. The Development Coordinator also will work with businesses and the education system to continue to expand on workforce strategies.

York, NE was awarded one of the 2017 Nebraska Talent Grants to be able to grow the manufacturing work base. The purpose of the grant is to raise awareness and interest in manufacturing, engineering and design with a cooperative program between Cyclonaire Corporation, York Middle School and York County Development Corporation. The grant was awarded to York’s very own Cyclonaire Corporation which is a material handling company that specializes in pneumatic conveying solutions. The goals for this program would be to:

  • Introduce students to the manufacturing process, from design to product creation.
  • Encourage interest in design, manufacturing and engineering areas through positive experience.
  • Raise awareness of career opportunities in these fields.
  • Raise awareness of local company activities requiring these skillsets.

York County Development Corporation and community partners have undertaken workforce initiatives to help connect workers and address long-term workforce challenges. One of the initiatives was the organizing and extensive marketing of a regional Job Fair and Career Day. This two-tier approach was organized to help recruit workforce to the area while exposing high school students to the opportunities in the region. The Job Fair and Career Day was a direct result of YCDC’s Business Retention & Expansion Program, which identified skilled workforce positions available and the need to identify future skills and opportunities needed by industries. The 5th Job Fair, Career Day & College night will be held on March 20th, 2018 in York. A Career Fair leads up to the Job Fair, and students attend panel discussions from businesses representing agriculture; food & natural resources; business, marketing & management; communications & information systems; health services; human services & education; and skilled & technical sciences. York Public Schools, one of the early partners, and Dr. Mike Lucas, Superintendent said, “It is extremely important for York Public Schools to be able to expose our students to different job and career opportunities. Partnering with YCDC allows us to better expose our students to numerous opportunities; many of which they don’t know about prior to the event.”

Being home to DuPont Pioneer, Dow Agrosciences, Monsanto and Green Plains Energy shows that manufacturing agri-business has invested in York County. Local farmers are proud to say York County has some of the best soil in the nation, and a highly irrigated county with access to one of the most abundant water sources in the nation, the Ogallala Aquifer. These assets provide the backbone to many agri-businesses located in York County, including advanced manufacturers. In January 2017, Pellet Technologies, USA opened up their first production facility in York, manufacturing cattle feed pellets utilizing corn stover and other agriculture by-products.

York County also has developed a niche in clean advanced manufacturing. Cyclonaire, UTC Aerospace Systems and many others find many advantages to being located in York County. In addition to ease of logistics and workforce, Nebraska offers low electric and natural gas rates. According to the latest energy Information Administration (EIA) data, Nebraska Public Power District’s (NPPD) commercial and industrial rates rank 7th overall. NPPD’s overall electric rates, based on final data from the U.S. Department of Energy for 2015, were 23.5 percent below the national average, and continue to improve. If a company qualifies for an economic development incentive program, such as one of the Dept. of Economic Development’s Nebraska Advantages programs, in addition to meeting load requirements, a company could be eligible for the economic development rate. NPPD serves the City of York, and Perennial Public Power District, a customer of NPPD, serves the rest of the County.


Hackensack-based Biogenesis recently received a $9.36-million tax break from the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA) to relocate to Paterson, NJ.

The award is keeping 62 jobs in New Jersey and creating 16 new ones, according to state records. The company’s chief executive officer Ann Rabbani indicated to the state the firm looked at relocating to Orangeburg, NY to consolidate its growing operations.

Presently headquartered in Hackensack, the firm is a full-service FDA registered contract manufacturer of skin care, over-the-counter preparations, and color cosmetic products. “Biogenesis offers complete procurement of raw materials, manufacturing and filling services for customers that range from large multi-national to smaller firms with niche markets with products sold in national and international department stores, national drug store chains, the internet, QVC and national catalogs,” reads the firm’s application to the state.

The firm has laboratory, production and warehouse operations in Hackensack and Teterboro. It plans to consolidate all its operations into a single facility at the 444 Marshall Street site in Paterson. The company’s lease of the Hackensack building expired on June 30th, 2017. The firm will spend $6.7 million on the 62,000-square-foot Paterson facility, according to state documents.

Renovation of the existing building is expected to be completed on January 1st, 2018. The firm is the latest to receive a large tax break to relocate to Paterson. In the past six months, the state awarded $29.4 in tax breaks to West Caldwell-based Vitaquest and $8.4 million to Passaic City-based LBU Inc. to move their headquarters to Paterson.

“I think the EDA has recognized Paterson has a viable workforce,” said mayor Jose “Joey” Torres, who has been under considerable criticism for not doing enough to grow the local economy and increase ratables through development.

Biogenesis will receive tax breaks through the Grow New Jersey Assistance Program over a 10-year period. The big tax break awards are due to the city being part of the Economic Opportunity Act which incentivizes economic development in New Jersey’s impoverished cities.

“We planted the seeds in 2013 and now we’re seeing it come to fruition,” said councilman Andre Sayegh, who pushed the City Council to approve a measure to designate the city as a growth zone as part of the Economic Opportunity Act.


From its stunning topography to its diverse workforce, Peoria, Arizona is becoming an increasingly popular place to live, work and invest. Peoria is in a unique position. It is a growing city with a thriving business community, a high-quality workforce, premier sites for investors and developers, as well as opportunities for public-private partnerships. Peoria is developing its economy to compete for local, national and global business. With a supportive mayor and highly involved city council driving the economic development strategies, Peoria’s leaders are not only taking control of their future, they are creating it.

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Peoria’s Innovation Center (rendering, above) is a 17-acre project in the heart of P83, the city’s premier entertainment district. (Photo: City of Peoria)

Currently, Peoria has three dynamic, shovel-ready sites in highly sought-after areas of the city.

Vistancia Commercial Core

  • 320-acres in the affluent, growing community of Vistancia
  • Zoned mixed-use/commercial
  • Adjacent to Loop 303, within minutes of Lake Pleasant and other area amenities
  • Build-to-suit corporate campus or advanced manufacturing options available
  • Available infrastructure and utilities
  • Located in an amenity-rich area with high-quality housing choices and top performing schools
  • Strong workforce within a 45 minute commute zone

Peoria Innovation Center in P83

  • 17-acre innovation center project in the heart of P83, Peoria’s premier entertainment district
  • Build to suit retail/restaurant pads and Class A office development opportunities
  • Adjacent to the San Diego Padres and Seattle Mariners spring training facility
  • Exceptional access, infrastructure and walkable amenities
  • More than 2 million square feet of retail & restaurants within a 3-mile radius
  • City will construct parking structures and provide ample surface parking
  • Strong workforce within a 30 minute commute zone

Peoria 101 Office Park

  • 14-acre business park site located on the SWC of Peoria Avenue and the Loop 101 freeway
  • Zoned mixed-use/commercial
  • Options for build-to-suit “Class B” office product
  • All utilities are adjacent to the site
  • Strong workforce within a 30 minute commute zone

Adopting an aggressive strategy has allowed the City to attract smart people and smart businesses to the area. Additionally, Peoria by far is a low cost option for both business and workforce attraction when compared to Austin and Dallas, Texas; Denver, Colorado; Salt Lake City, Utah; and San Diego, San Francisco and Los Angeles, California.

Having an available, high-quality workforce is essential in today’s competitive business environment. Peoria has an abundant, educated workforce within a 30-minute drive from most major employment centers in the Phoenix metropolitan area. The average professional in and around Peoria is young, approximately 35 years old, with a college degree. With many more working years left, these entrepreneurs and professionals dominate today’s workforce. A strong and talented workforce makes the relocation and/or expansion decision easier for investors and businesses that are ready to make a smart move.

Peoria was recently ranked number seven on America’s 50 Best Cities to Live list from Yahoo Finance, and for good reason. With more than 300 days of sunshine, excellent schools and indoor and outdoor amenities, Peoria is a great destination in the Valley of the Sun. Home to one of Arizona’s largest lakes, beautiful parks and more than 25 miles of hiking trails throughout the city, Peoria offers many outdoor recreational opportunities. Peoria also boasts exceptional arts and cultural amenities, breathtaking golf courses and the P83 Sports Entertainment District, which is the spring training home to the San Diego Padres and Seattle Mariners.

When you are ready to invest, Peoria will provide a dedicated, in-house team for quick and consistent plan review, permitting and inspection. By providing a team approach, we are able to establish realistic schedules and timeframes to meet your deadlines, which are critical to the success of your project. Also available for the right project, is Peoria’s Priority Track Processing Policy. This policy moves your expedited plan reviews and permitting to “the front of the line” at no cost.

Our economic development team is ready to help you make your move to one of Arizona’s premier cities. Visit for Peoria’s real estate, partnership, business location and investment opportunities.