A groundbreaking was held Aug. 19 for a 1 million-square-foot distribution center at Berks Park 78 in Bethel Township.
U.S. Rep. Dan Meuser, state Sen. David Argall and Berks County commissioners Chairman Christian Y. Leinbach joined officials from NorthPoint Development of Missouri for the ceremony.
As of now, there is no tenant lined up for the distribution center.
Officials said the project will provide 150 immediate construction jobs for residents in the Berks County region and has the potential to bring 400 permanent jobs once a tenant is found.
It is also expected to generate more than $16 million in real estate taxes over the next 20 years.
The distribution center will be the fourth facility at the industrial park near Interstate 78 and Route 501. The new building will join completed distribution centers for PetSmart, Dollar General and Samsung. There was no word of a tenant for the Northpoint building.
Nathaniel Hagedorn, NorthPoint CEO, said the location of the industrial park is ideal for the company.
"Berks Park 78 has a strategic location for major highway access that will service and promote economic development for local communities," he said. "We look forward to our long-term partnership with Bethel and Pennsylvania."
Meuser, who represents the district in which the project is located, said the groundbreaking is great news for Berks County.
"This new distribution facility will provide hundreds of good-paying new jobs, while also expanding the county’s tax base," he said. "With an advantageous location and a skilled workforce, Berks County is a great place to do business.”
Argall said working with professionals like NorthPoint, Blue Rock Construction and Schlouch Inc. makes large projects go much more smoothly.
Leinbach added that he's pleased to see commercial construction still booming in Berks, especially the Interstate 78 corridor, in spite of the coronavirus pandemic.
He said the financial boost from projects like this will help the community weather the economic downturn caused by the public health crisis.
"The construction jobs and, along with the jobs provided by the business that will eventually occupy this building, as well as the tax revenues will benefit Bethel Township, the Tulpehocken School District and Berks County," he said.