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Caterpillar will bring more retail, population and money into Crossroads

Aug. 12, 2010 at 3:12 a.m.


Plans for Caterpillar to break ground at the Lone Tree Business Center off Loop 463 in September is just the first of many expected groundbreakings.

The $150-million, 600,000-square-foot manufacturing company is expected to bring 500 jobs during the first phase, but it's also expected to bring several new businesses to the area as the population and local economy grow, said Randy Vivian, president of the Victoria Chamber of Commerce.

"This could be transformative for the community," said Vivian. He noted the area has fared well during the economic downturn.

Once employees begin working at the manufacturing plant, more money will be injected into the local economy and more families will be moving to Victoria.

Vivian expects that injection will bring suppliers into Victoria just to be close to the plant, as well as expansion of existing and new restaurants and retail, he said.

"A lot of these businesses are triggered off of certain population levels," he said. "I see our potential for growth in the retail and service sector is going to be significant. You will see these secondary opportunities begin to flourish."

One of the manufacturing facilities in Aurora, Ill., has been operating for 50 years, said Jim Dugan, chief corporate spokesperson.

The one-time rural suburb has grown in retail and population; however, he was not sure if that was a result of solely Caterpillar.

Still, Brian Harris, a customer service representative at Sunbelt Rental in Victoria, was excited to learn about the proximity of a large company like Caterpillar.

"It would bring great business. It will benefit us," he said. "It'll expand our parts availability."

The equipment rental business has several parts made by Caterpillar, so its close proximity to Victoria is an exciting prospect for the quality and rapid manufacturing and availability of tools, he said.

"I think it'll bring commerce to our city, much needed jobs in a needed industry and help with population growth," he said.

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