Renovated Georgetown mill brings jobs, business to Kings County
Creating jobs for Islanders -
In just over a year, the former Georgetown Timber mill has changed from an empty shell to a magnet that is attracting employers and skilled workers to eastern Kings County.
The 40,000 square foot former mill was converted into a multi-tenant facility in August 2016. Stainless-steel equipment manufacturer Eastern Fabricators moved in as the founding tenant.
Wind turbine maker Frontier Power Systems became the second tenant in December 2016, signing a 10-year lease for a 10,800 square foot building to manufacture wind turbine blades. Between the two companies, the facility could see upwards of 50 workers on site.
“There’s a lot of activity happening at the Georgetown Timber yard and it’s very exciting. Employers are finding skilled workers here looking for jobs – people like red-seal welders,” says Perry Gotell, a board member of Georgetown Port Inc.
“It’s good timing in a way. With the slowdown in Alberta we had a lot of people come back home who had been working in the oil business, and now they’d like to stay. The companies opening at Georgetown Timber are letting them do that.”
As part of its commitment to creating jobs for Islanders, the Government of Prince Edward Island partnered with ACOA to help Georgetown Port Inc. (GPI) revitalize the Georgetown Timber property in August 2016. Finance PEI owns the property and has leased the property to GPI.
Gotell said he has been happy to see activity and work at a site that had been languishing.
“It’s good work, hands-on work and there has been steady growth,” he said. “It’s great to see a lot of cars at that building, because people are there working every day.
“That shipyard is the big one, we want to see that operating and we keep our eyes open for opportunities. But we are also being creative about the possibilities for jobs and development here in Georgetown,” Gotell said.
“We want to be diverse and strong to contribute to the economy of this region.”
The provincial government loaned GPI $1.9 million through the P.E.I. Century Fund to help renovate the facility, while Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency provided $750,000 through its Innovative Communities Fund.
Learn more about Finance PEI.