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Smith Trucking plans relocation: Company identifies 30-acre parcel in industrial park

WORTHINGTON -- A 30-acre parcel north of Interstate 90 and west of Nobles County Ditch 12 on Worthington's north side may soon be home to Smith Trucking. The Worthington-based company received acceptance from the Worthington City Council Monday n...

WORTHINGTON - A 30-acre parcel north of Interstate 90 and west of Nobles County Ditch 12 on Worthington’s north side may soon be home to Smith Trucking. The Worthington-based company received acceptance from the Worthington City Council Monday night to enter into a memorandum of understanding to purchase the lot.

The MOU will remain in effect until June 1, 2017, which gives the trucking firm the time it needs to develop its site plan - and gives the city the time it needs to extend city services such as street, water and sewer to the parcel.
Mike Smith, vice president and general manager of Smith Trucking, said the 30-acre lot will ultimately house its main headquarters, maintenance facility and storage, bringing all of their operations to one site. The company currently has a maintenance facility along Second Avenue (down the hill from the Worthington Fire Station), in addition to a headquarters near JBS.
“The 30 acres is so we lock in something long-term,” said Smith. “Other services go along with our industry (include) warehousing. I’m not saying we have intentions of doing that immediately, but if something comes along, we want it all in one location. We want to plan for the future a little bit.”
Responding to council concerns about the amount of land sought by the company, Smith said, “You can go by our lot on a Monday morning and there won’t be anything in the yard, and on a Friday or Saturday there could be 100 trucks.”
With the relocation and expansion project, Smith Trucking has plans to add up to 15 new full-time employees as its business continues to grow, though more accurate details will be provided in the final development agreement.
Council member Scott Nelson said the plans by Smith Trucking are the catalyst the city needs to complete infrastructure in the development west of U.S. 59.
“This gives us the opportunity to develop the road further in and work with a great local company,” said Mayor Mike Kuhle. “It just opens up other lots out there by doing this.
“I think the best thing about this is we’re working with a local company to expand - with a long history in Worthington and Round Lake,” he added.
With the council’s approval of the MOU, Worthington Director of Community and Economic Development Brad Chapulis said staff will begin working on the subdivision and zoning processes, creating lots and blocks.
“We would make sure the zoning process is complete before the MOU expires,” Chapulis said.
It is estimated the property will be ready for development by Smith Trucking in the summer of 2017.

Julie Buntjer became editor of The Globe in July 2021, after working as a beat reporter at the Worthington newspaper since December 2003. She has a bachelor's degree in agriculture journalism from South Dakota State University.
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