Allegany County graphic

CUMBERLAND — Construction of a FedEx Transport Distribution Center will soon begin in Mexico Farms, according to the Allegany County Board of Commissioners.

The board voted Thursday to approve construction plans for a 193,000-square-foot distribution center on 40 acres at the corner of Maryland Route 51 and Mexico Farms Road. The vote was taken at the board’s regular public meeting held at the Allegany County Office Complex on Kelly Road.

“This is great news,” said Jake Shade, board president. “We are happy to have FedEx expand here in Allegany County.”

The facility will result in many new jobs for the area, according to Jeff Barclay, director of economic development for the county. Barclay said the FedEx distribution center will be the first high-volume employer to build in the area since American Woodmark opened along U.S. Route 220 in 2005.

“We are happy to be working with FedEx,” said Barclay. “They’ve been very good to deal with and very community-minded.”

Lee Beeman, county attorney, said that construction could begin in the next two months, with FedEx wanting to be operational at the site “in a year from now or less.”

The board voted to extend a $3 million line from the county’s Revolving Building Fund to the developer for infrastructure work including utility lines and road and traffic improvements. The developer for the project is Jones Development Co., LLC, based in Kansas City, Missouri.

“I’ll clarify this,” said Commissioner Creade Brodie Jr. “The Revolving Building Fund is not funded with taxpayer dollars. It is self-funded through assets of Allegany County.”

“You think $3 million sounds like a big number but it is really not in the grand scheme of things with what this will cost (Jones Development) to build,” said Barclay.

Jason Bennett, county administrator, said the county will benefit from increases in employment, taxes and property values from having the distribution center located in the county.

Shade said, “The Jones Development Company over the years has developed over 17.5 million square feet of building space totaling over $1 billion investment in 42 states. Commerce continues to boom. I want to thank the staff for all their effort on this.”

Commissioner Dave Caporale said, “Thank you Jeff Barclay and the staff for their hard work. We are very excited about this announcement.”

Greg Larry is a reporter at the Cumberland Times-News. To reach him, call 304-639-4951, email glarry@times-news.com and follow him on Twitter

@GregLarryCTN.

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Greg Larry is a reporter at the Cumberland Times-News. To reach him, call 304-639-4951, email glarry@times-news.com and follow him on Twitter @greglarryctn.