CORNELIUS, N.C. — Yokohama Tire Corp. reportedly is planning to relocate its recently opened research and development facility in Concord, N.C., to a greenfield site in nearby Cornelius.
The plan to relocate still is contingent upon approval of a Business Investment Program grant by the Mecklenburg County Board of Commissioners, as well as of an Economic Development Incentive grant by the Cornelius Town Board of Commissioners, according to a statement by the Lake Norman Economic Development agency.
Santa Ana, Calif.-based YTC — which set up an R&D facility in Concord in September 2016 — has as yet not officially confirmed the plan, which was disclosed April 10 by the Lake Norman Economic Development agency.
Cornelius is a town of roughly 25,000 located at the south end of Lake Norman, about 20 miles north of Charlotte, N.C.
The agency's news release includes a statement by Tetsuya Kuze, vice president of Yokohama Corp. of North Carolina, in which Mr. Kuze calls Cornelius a "great fit" for his company.
Other news reports this week by various media in North Carolina have disclosed details about the project, including its cost ($5.8 million), size (27,470 square feet) and staffing (56 employees).
The news reports did not, however, quantify how much economic support YTC is expecting to receive from Mecklenburg County and/or the town of Cornelius, nor how soon those economic support incentives are to be voted on.
In 2016, Yokohama said its decision to open a facility in North Carolina was facilitated in part by a performance-based grant of up to $150,000 from the One North Carolina Fund, which provides financial assistance in support of local governments in creating jobs and attracting economic investment.
Cornelius Mayor Woody Washam called YTC's planned expansion to his town a "great win for our community. This is an excellent example of how the Town has worked to add additional tax base and high-quality jobs," he was quoted as saying in the Lake Norman agency's release.
Key partners in this project include the North Carolina Community College System, the Charlotte Chamber, The Knox Group, Legacy Pointe Properties and UNC Charlotte.