The Pearland Economic Development Corporation (PEDC) released its 2018 annual report, providing a summary of activities the PEDC has accomplished throughout the previous year.
According to the report, 2018 saw economic growth with a record $22.5 million in sales tax revenue, and PEDC’s partnerships with the companies mentioned in this year’s report brought more than $178 million in capital investment to the community.
Highlights include continued progress in the Lower Kirby District as the area welcomes new employers, and continued implementation of the Pearland 20/20 Community Strategic Plan, through infrastructure improvements, beautification, and continued promotion of Pearland.
Several companies opened new facilities in the Lower Kirby district in 2018. Lonza opened the world’s largest cell and gene therapy facility in April 2018. The 300,000-square foot facility employs 250 people locally and produces treatment for rare genetic disorders and life-threatening diseases.
Swiss-based manufacturing company Endress+Hauser announced Pearland’s Lower Kirby District would be home to their new Gulf Coast Regional Center. Their 100,000-square-foot facility will feature calibration, repair, and training areas as well as office space for 110 employees. Construction for the facility is due to begin in 2019.
Tool-Flo Manufacturing and Rex Supply each completed construction on new headquarters facilities in the Lower Kirby District in late 2018. Both companies are industrial tool manufacturers and located on the same 15-acre site.
Tool-Flo Manufacturing constructed an 80,000-square-foot facility home to 150 employees for the manufacture of precision carbide, metal-working tools, and products for the oil/gas, automotive, and medical industries. Rex Supply, one of the top 100 suppliers of industrial tools in the country, maximizes the use of their 46,000-square-foot headquarters and warehouse facility by additionally leveraging it as a distribution center for Production Tool Supply Co., LLC.
In addition, Lower Kirby continues to receive infrastructure improvements, as the 1200-acre Lower Kirby District continues to transform into Pearland’s most extensive mixed-use employment, residential, and entertainment area. This includes the development of amenity space in the Ivy District for a public park, and the construction of North and South Spectrum Drive.
The Pearland 20/20 Community Strategic Plan, adopted in 2013, identified nine initiatives to take Pearland to the next level of success as an economy and sustainable residential location.
One of the highlights from 2018 includes the start of construction for enhancements to SH35. The SH35 Corridor Redevelopment Project features streetscape enhancements, including two gateway signs at Clear Creek near Beltway 8, surrounding entry features, tree plantings in medians, and aesthetic improvements at major intersection.
In addition, construction began for the Rice Drier Commerce Park at SH35, a new business park featuring two light industrial/warehouse flex buildings on the 18-acre site.
SH288 infrastructure and beautification efforts are underway with the 288 Corridor Master Improvements Plan. The PEDC funded aesthetic hardscape improvements for the portion of the project from Clear Creek to County Road 59, including brick pavers, new curbs, sidewalks, wet and dry detention ponds, and upgraded decorative signal poles. Additional aesthetic improvements will be added to SH288 after toll lane construction is completed. These aesthetic improvements include artistic sculptures at key intersections, landscaping, irrigation, large water fountains, and gateway signage. This is scheduled for completion in 2020.
PEDC is also preparing for a feasibility analysis for a multi-use event center, and creating an internal community marketing campaign to help promote Pearland and its assets.
The PEDC will begin developing a new economic development community strategic plan that outlines goals and objectives to continue the immense momentum the community has generated over the past several years.