Last updated: August 19. 2014 12:20AM - 1347 Views
By - tjoyce@civitasmedia.com



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An industrial park in Mount Airy is getting a new tenant — a propane storage and distribution facility to be developed by an existing local company.


Hall Propane and its parent firm, Twin County Energy Inc. based in Walnut Cove, have bought a site in Piedmont Triad West Corporate Park for the new operation.


It will include the erection of two 30,000-gallon propane tanks and other facilities on a site of about 1.2 acres.


“They’re fairly large tanks,” city Community Development Director Martin Collins described Monday.


Collins explained that the new location will allow Hall Propane to store the product in bulk and better serve the area. Trucks will be filled up at the site and make deliveries to local customers, including poultry houses relying on that energy source.


“This will be a distribution center,” Todd Tucker, Surry County Economic Development Partnership president, said of the installation planned by Hall Propane. “And they’ll keep their operation there on (U.S.) 52 as a commercial location.” Tucker said of the company’s existing facility near Mayflower Seafood.


Hall Propane will be the sixth tenant at Piedmont Triad West and the first to locate at the industrial park located just off U.S. 601 since 2009, when Central States Manufacturing broke ground for a plant there.


Local economic-development officials are happy about the new tenant.


“It’s a good thing,” Collins said of the facility planned by Hall Propane. “They’re a valuable local company.” He said officials are pleased that “they are putting in some infrastructure to better serve local customers.”


The site in the industrial park is zoned to accommodate the propane storage and distribution facility, which is expected to be completed soon. “They definitely want to finish it in time for the fall and winter business,” Collins said.


In addition to the large storage tanks and loading and unloading infrastructure, the operation will include truck driveways, parking spaces and a fence for security purposes.


It will not be breaking any new ground locally as far as the nature of the facility.


“Mount Airy has a number of propane companies currently,” Collins said, with Tucker mentioning that the Hall Propane operation will be similar to an AmeriGas facility on Riverside Drive.


“Those are tightly controlled companies,” Tucker said of numerous regulations and permitting procedures propane suppliers must adhere to in ensuring safety. Site plans also must be filed for such installations.


“They’ve already gone through a lot of that,” Tucker said of Hall Propane.


While Collins said Mount Airy enjoys a good natural gas infrastructure, propane serves as an alternative energy source to outlying customers who don’t have access to that pipeline network.


Tucker said Collins’ efforts enabled the Hall Propane project to come together. “Martin did all the legwork on this.”


With the sale of the site to Twin County Energy/Hall Propane, there are three more smaller commercial lots remaining in the front portion of Piedmont Triad West Corporate Park and two larger industrial sites inside the park.


Tom Joyce may be reached at 336-415-4693 or on Twitter @Me_Reporter.

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