When The Hollingsworth Companies built the SouthPoint Business Park Huntsville, Alabama in 1999, little did they know that BOCAR would locate across the street; and, this would be the closest industrial park to a future Toyota Mazda plant. In November 2017, BOCAR announced a new plant on Bibb Garrett Road. In January, Toyota Mazda announced they will invest $1.6 billion to build a 300,000 SF vehicle assembly plant near Huntsville in Limestone County, Alabama.
Tommy Battle, the current mayor of Huntsville, was a key player on the team to land the Toyota Mazda project. He has provided strong leadership for job creation and the rapid growth of the Huntsville metro area. “We have a great deal to celebrate. In the past five years, our team has created 15,000 new jobs and over $2 billion in capital investment and we are not done yet,” stated Battle. On April 27, 2017, Battle announced that he would run in the 2018 gubernatorial election in the state of Alabama, running as a Republican. Battle is quoted as saying, “We’re not just in a battle for Alabama’s values. We’re in a battle for Alabama’s future. I’m running for governor, because I’m ready to lead that fight.” If elected, Battle would be the first mayor elected governor in the state’s history.
SouthPoint Business Park, just one highway ramp away from the new plant, is in good company with a recently opened Polaris plant, a recent GE aviation facility, and a Target distribution center. The SouthPoint Business Park at 40% of its capacity includes distribution companies, automotive suppliers, and defense contractors. With the improved economy and the announcement from Toyota Mazda, it is anticipated that the remaining lots in the park will fill up very quickly. The current plans for the park include the construction of 7 facilities from 108,960 SF to 327,600 SF on lots sized from 11.12 acres to 26.42 acres.
The new Toyota Mazda automotive site, off Powell Road and Greenbrier Road, was passed over by Volkswagen in 2008 in favor of Chattanooga. Since then, it has been certified as a TVA Mega site and an Advantage Alabama site by the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama.
It also didn’t hurt that Toyota Motor Corp. President Akio Toyoda already had warm, nostalgic feelings about Alabama. While making the plant announcement last week here in the state capital, he recalled that he stayed in Alabama as a Boy Scout on his first extended trip away from home.
The partners worked out the plan for the new plant — from proposal to completed deal — in just five months, according to Alabama officials who delivered an acceptable factory location in that short time. “Very seldom can a project of this size be put together as fast as this one,” said Tommy Battle, Huntsville’s mayor, who helped put it together.
The SouthPoint Business Park Huntsville, Alabama is located adjacent to both the I-65 and 1-565. This location provides excellent access to markets from Nashville, TN and Louisville, KY to the north and Birmingham and Montgomery, AL to the south. This corridor is highly favored by companies that serve the southern automotive market. The Huntsville area is also well suited for companies that support the Army Procurement Command, Redstone Arsenal, and NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center.