Report: Boyle had 17 economic development projects announced in 2019

Published 6:40 pm Thursday, January 16, 2020



Ninety-two businesses expressed some level of interest in opening or expanding in Boyle County during 2019. Seventeen of them publicly announced plans and 10 of those 17 projects were completed.

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That’s according to the final 2019 “project funnel” report from the Danville-Boyle County Economic Development Partnership. The public version of the quarterly report was released this week by EDP President Jody Lassiter. It contains summary information of every project the EDP worked on in 2019, as well as some projects announced previously but completed or still in process in 2019.

The report says Boyle County was “qualified” for 80% of the project inquiries it received, meaning nothing immediately precluded the county from consideration. About 43% of inquiries made it to the “due diligence” phase, when companies are looking for more detailed specifics such as potential locations. And 18% turned into announced projects, with more than half of those announcements being completed, meaning a new business opened or an existing one completed its expansion/renovation/relocation.

The 17 announced projects in 2019 topped the 13 that were announced in 2018, according to the funnel report. The EDP added two announced projects on its final funnel report of the year that had not yet been announced when the third-quarter report was released in October:

  • PT Pros, a new commercial business in Danville, opened on Nov. 18 in the Ridgefield Shopping Center. The report provides no public estimates of investment or number of jobs created.
  • Project Koda, from U.S. Yoshukai Karate Kentucky, announced expanded class locations via social media on Dec. 18, but a new Danville location is “delayed.” The project is estimated to eventually create between one and nine jobs.

Two projects that had been announced but were still in the works on the previous funnel report were completed during the fourth quarter of 2019:

  • Captain D’s, which was announced publicly as a project in June, opened its doors on the south end of the Danville Bypass in October. The report estimates investment at between $1 million and $5 million and the number of jobs created at between 25 and 49.
  • Bluegrass Sports Center, which was announced by the owner in April, opened for business in October. The report estimates the project involved an investment of at least $100,000 but less than $500,000.

In all, there were 60 commercial inquiries and 32 industrial inquiries in 2019; 72 of the inquiries were about opening new locations, while 18 were about potential expansions. The report lists zero projects involving “retention” — meaning projects completed to prevent layoffs or closure of a business. A total of 39 projects the EDP worked on in 2019 will be carried forward as open projects in 2020.

Lassiter said one of the projects announced in 2019 — an expansion at Meggitt Aircraft Braking Systems that involves an investment of nearly $83 million — made The Lane Report’s list of Kentucky’s largest 2019 new and expanding industries.

Meggitt’s project, which is estimated to create 83 new jobs, ranked ninth on the list, though Lassiter noted the list did not include the $130 million investment distilling giant Diageo is making in neighboring Marion County. Nucor Corp. topped the list with a plan to invest more than $1.35 billion in a steel plate manufacturing mill in Brandenburg, creating 400 jobs.

The 10 projects listed by the report as announced and completed in 2019 are:

  • the previously mentioned PT Pros, Captain D’s and Bluegrass Sports Center projects;
  • NuBreed Academy, which opened in Junction City in the spring;
  • Air Hydro Power Inc., which is estimated to have created between one and nine jobs and opened in Danville in September;
  • Kentucky Cheer All Stars, which has a building on Meigs Lane in Junction City;
  • Salted Honey Café, which opened in Perryville on Sept. 26;
  • Meggitt’s previously mentioned 45-job expansion;
  • Hobart’s previously mentioned 16-job expansion; and
  • The Farmhouse Restaurant, which opened in Boyle County in May.

The seven projects announced but still in the works are:

  • the previously mentioned Project Koda karate expansion;
  • Thomas Travel Inc., which is expected to invest between $100,000 and $500,000 on an “expansion location” in Danville;
  • IJW Whiskey, which is building additional storage for bourbon barrels at its Lebanon Road location;
  • Meggitt’s previously mentioned 83-job expansion;
  • DMK Development Group, which is building an assisted living facility on the bypass near Stuart Powell Ford;
  • Asuka Japanese Steakhouse, which has announced plans to build its first satellite location next to Cattleman’s Steakhouse on the south end of the bypass; and
  • International Farmaceutical Extracts, which plans to invest $6 million and create 34 jobs building a hemp processing facility.