Port authority group shot

Members of the Pike/Lincoln County Port Authority, Community State Bank and People’s Savings Bank celebrate the purchase of approximately 3,100 acres of property from Holcim Cement on July 12 near Clarksville on Hwy. 79. The area will be developed into a shared regional port, which will bring jobs for both counties. Submitted photo

Nearly 3,100-acre harbor property poised to bring jobs to region

By SHAWN SINGLETON

Lincoln County Journal

 

Lincoln/Pike County—The face of economic development in the Lincoln and Pike County region changed on July 12.

The Pike/Lincoln County Port Authority bought about 3,100 acres of land from Holcim Cement along Hwy. 79 near Clarksville. People’s Savings Bank and Community State Bank assisted in the sale of the property.

Holcim ran a concrete facility there for years before closing and moving its operations to Bloomsdale in Sainte Genevieve County several years ago, leaving the property vacant until the recent sale.

The property will now be used to revive the economies of both counties, focusing mainly on the harbor along the Mississippi River ultimately to create more jobs for the region.

“There is a need to move products by barge and by rail,” said Pike County Economic Development Executive Director Carolyn Wisecarver. “Our main focus is to move products along the river.

“Our plans are to clean (the property) up, and to lease the remaining space out.”

Wisecarver also said the PLCPA’s joint venture will shorten the commute for companies to transport their products and goods, which will lead to a better “shared quality of living” for both counties.

“We’re a regional port, and it will directly affect both counties,” she said. “It also has a rail spur, so it will accommodate all of the modes of transportation to attract businesses (in the area).”

The PLCPA has already begun work on the planning stages of the property, according to Wisecarver, and has started the cleanup project.

“We’re immediately starting on the cleanup plan,” she said. “We’re working on the development plan right now.

“We’re definitely not sitting on it.

Wisecarver said both Lincoln and Pike counties would reap instant benefits from the development of the property—and the shared labor force it will create.

“This joint venture will be very successful, I think,” she said.

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