China Grove gives warm welcome to Macy’s after company announces Rowan County fulfillment center

Published 12:03 am Friday, April 1, 2022

CHINA GROVE — Local elected leaders and economic officials gathered in China Grove’s Town Hall on Thursday evening to welcome the town’s newest corporate resident and celebrate the single largest job announcement in Rowan County’s history.

With banners bearing the company’s logo, red and white balloons floating in the air and a congratulatory cake sliced for all to enjoy, the only thing missing was a parade.

The celebration came just hours after it was announced that Macy’s will invest $584.3 million in a 1.4 million-square-foot e-commerce fulfillment center at exit 68 in China Grove.

“The warm welcome that you all have played out for us, I can’t even thank you enough for how great it feels that you are welcoming us,” said Jodi Buhrman, vice president of supply chain for Macy’s. “The excitement that you all feel is how we feel as well and I would love to echo all of the thank you’s that have been shared. The community has done such a fabulous job at offering us the incentives and the growth opportunities to come here that we know this is going to be a great partnership.”

The project is expected to generate 2,800 jobs, more than double the amount announced when Chewy signaled its arrival in 2019 — the previous record. Rod Crider, president of the Rowan Economic Development Council, pointed to Chewy’s arrival as being the catalyst for the growth that has happened since, including Macy’s arrival.

“Chewy really put the ball in motion for us and what we’re hearing from a lot of developers is that if Chewy came to Rowan County, maybe they should take a look too,” Crider said.

Founded in 1858 in New York City, Macy’s has been around much longer than Chewy. While the heyday of department stores appears to be in the past, the well-known company is marching forward with its focus on an online retail future.

“I’m excited it’s Macy’s because Macy’s is a company that’s been around for a long time and to be around that long a time, they’ve done something right during that time,” China Grove Mayor Charles Seaford said. “I see them with this fulfillment center as taking the next step toward growth for their company.”

County Chair Greg Edds said Macy’s brings more than experience and strong brand recognition to Rowan County.

“You’re not just building a building, and you know that,” Edds said. “You’re building a community and this is a big deal for us because it’s a four letter word and I’ve said it, it’s hope. It really brings hope to our community.”

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 ben.stansell@salisburypost.com.

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