Commissioners set public hearings for industrial park incentives, sale of land for RV dealership

Published 12:06 am Tuesday, March 22, 2022

SALISBURY — The Rowan County Board of Commissioners on Monday night scheduled public hearings for two potential economic development projects to be held during their next meeting on April 4.

One public hearing will be to consider an incentive request for a 379-acre industrial park being planned on Long Ferry Road by Red Rock Developments. The industrial park would be located about a mile off I-85 at exit 81, not far from Chewy’s e-commerce fulfillment center.

The industrial park would have 2.65 million square feet of commercial space spread across six buildings, including a 1.2 million-square-foot facility that would be considerably larger than Chewy’s 700,000 square foot facility. The other five buildings would range in size from 168,480 square feet to 572,113 square feet, according to a site plan. Red Rock would develop the park over multiple phases, with the capital investment in phase one alone exceeding $100 million, according to a memo from the Rowan Economic Development Council.

Plans for the industrial park were presented to community members during a meeting held at the Millers Ferry Fire Department earlier this month.

The second public hearing on April 4 will be to consider a $2.9 million offer from Utah Development to purchase a 40.24-acre plot of land owned by the county. The property is located at the end of East Ritchie Road, behind Koontz Elementary School and across from the Summit Corporate Center.

Johnson Development Associates made an offer to purchase the property for $1.95 million on Feb. 7. The company intended to build a speculative building on the property. Utah Development upped the ante by offering $2.2 million and Johnson Development countered their offer with a $2.5 million proposal. Utah Development’s most recent offer of $2.9 million is almost $1 million over the land’s appraised value.

Utah Development plans to invest approximately $25 million in developing a recreational vehicle dealership for General RV on the property. The company would create 150 full-time jobs over the next three years.

Normally, offers to purchase county-owned property are subject to the upset bid process. The Rowan EDC is seeking to bypass that process based on the “potential impact of the project” by utilizing North Carolina General Statute 158-7.1(d), which allows for private negotiation in the interest of overall economic development. The first step in the process is to host a public hearing, which would give community members a chance to weigh in on the sale.

The April 4 meeting will be held at 3 p.m. in the J. Newton Cohen Sr. Room on the second floor of the Rowan County Administration Building.

About Ben Stansell

Ben Stansell covers business, county government and more for the Salisbury Post. He joined the staff in August 2020 after graduating from the University of Alabama. Email him at

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