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Pietro Fiorentini USA plant is a step closer to reality with land purchase


The Weirton Daily Times

WEIRTON, W.Va.  — A manufacturing facility initially announced four years ago is closer to becoming a reality, with expectations of opening sometime in 2018.

Area government and development officials announced Tuesday that Pietro Fiorentini USA has finalized an agreement to purchase 26.4 acres of land in the Three Springs Business Park. The facility will provide an initial 41 jobs, with plans of up to 150 employees once fully operational.

The land purchase agreement was finalized Friday, with representatives of the company meeting in Weirton with local officials.

“Pietro Fiorentini USA is very impressed with the commitment to economic development and job growth demonstrated by the state, Brooke County, the City of Weirton and the Business Development Corporation of the Northern Panhandle,” David Watkins, president of Pietro Fiorentini USA, stated of the $9 million project. “We are grateful to Brooke County Commissioner Jim Andreozzi, Weirton Mayor Harold Miller and others for their hard work and collaboration to create this win-win agreement.”

The site will be used for the production of pressure regulators, valves and pressure reducing and meter systems for the natural gas industry.

This will be the first manufacturing facility in the United States for Italy-based Pietro Fiorentini. The company currently has a sales office and distributorship in the U.S., and distributes to more than 80 countries.

Pat Ford, executive director of the BDC, explained the company will be working to complete designs of the project over the next few months, with construction set to begin later this year.

“They anticipate breaking ground this summer, with completion in either the last quarter of 2017 or the first quarter of 2018,” Ford said.

Ford noted the project can be traced to a European trade mission in 2012, during which time West Virginia officials made initial contacts with Pietro Fiorentini.

Andreozzi, who represents the Brooke Commission on the BDC board, said of the news, “This is going to be a wonderful opportunity.”

Noting Fiorentini serves the natural gas industry, Andreozzi said he hopes the potential development of ethane cracker plants north and south of Hancock and Brooke counties will attract related industries to the area.

“We’re hoping it’s just the tip of the iceberg,” he said, adding the BDC has been working to redevelop several unused industrial sites.

Miller noted the teamwork among state, county and local officials to complete the deal.

“It took a lot of effort,” Miller said. “Together, everyone pulled their weight.”

Brooke Commission President Tim Ennis also noted the collaborative effort, explaining bringing Pietro Fiorentini to Weirton was a top priority for former governor Earl Ray Tomblin before he left office, with state Secretary of Commerce Keith Burdette, Economic Development Authority Director David Warner, and others, involved in much of the process.

Local entities are providing approximately $1 million toward the project, including funding for site assessments and cleanup, as well as the construction of road access to the site.

This is the fourth industrial project in five years for the Three Springs Business Park, including the expansion of rue21, the relocation and expansion of Barney’s Bakery and the construction of North American Industrial Services.

See more from The Weirton Daily Times

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