(Monroe, LA) Millhaven Plantation, LLC, in cooperation with its partners, Louisiana Economic Development (LED), North Louisiana Economic Partnership (NLEP) and Entergy Louisiana today announced another LED certified site in Ouachita Parish which will be the area’s first business park that will cater to light industrial, retail and general business tenants. The business park could also accommodate residential development in a buffered area of the property. Located on Highway 597 just of I-20’s Millhaven exit in Ouachita Parish, Millhaven North is a 725 acre, development-ready site that will target clean tech, light industrial and general businesses.
“Our family envisions a high-end business park that will be the first of its kind in Northeast Louisiana. The location of the site provides a great synergy with the current growth happening along the I-20 retail corridor. By opening up 725 acres for development, we hope to continue to spur growth and economic development for our area,” said Frederick Huenefeld, III, one of the property owners.
Huenefeld and his sister Becky Harrod have been working with NLEP and Entergy to apply for the LED certification for more than six months. The property must undergo a rigorous review process by LED and a third party engineering firm to ensure that the site is development ready. Certified sites are often preferred by companies looking to fast-track their location or expansion projects.
“Combining resources is the key to successfully promoting, developing and marketing sites within our state. It is our great pleasure to play an integral part in this critical process,” said Mary Ann Moon, CEcD, Entergy Louisiana.
"The certification of the Millhaven North site will help our area be more prepared and ready for prospective and expanding companies. North Louisiana Economic Partnership (NLEP) and its partners are assisting landowners with the LED certification process, because we have a shortage of development-ready sites across many communities in North Louisiana. By providing more certifited sites, we increase our ability to have what companies are seeking," said Kurt Foreman, NLEP President.
State and local leaders are excited about this newest asset for Northeast Louisiana.
“I am optimistic about what this project can accomplish— not only by providing a much desired boost to the local economy, but also by serving as a source of pride for the community,” said Congressman Rodney Alexander.
“At my oldest daughter's suggestion, I recently picked up a book entitled "The Art of War." In this book, the reader discovers the most important stage of any endeavor whether it’s a military campaign or economic development efforts is the "preparative unseen phase" which is generally never recognized but is fundamental to success. Our certified sites demonstrate that we get it. I extend a warm welcome and feel a strong sense of pride in Millhaven North. This certified site, along with the previously developed Charleston site, has positioned Ouachita Parish as an economic leader and a cradle of future prosperity for our residents and the state of Louisiana,” said Dr. Ollibeth Reddix, Ouachita Parish Police Juror.
"Having certified industrial sites is important to site selectors when they are seeking possible locations for various industries. We commend the Huenefeld family and all others who are working on this project. This is the second site certified in Ouachita Parish in less than one year. This increases our chances of being chosen by companies considering location or expansion here," said Mayor Jamie Mayo, City of Monroe.
Conveniently located off I-20, near the Monroe Regional Airport and numerous ports, and adjacent to Class 1 Kansas City Southern Railroad, Millhaven North is ideally suited for light industrial, research development, commercial, or retail. The 725 acre site can accommodate multiple types of businesses, requiring large tracts of land near a population center with a qualified workforce.
“My deep commitment to serve the citizens of District 34 and the great State of Louisiana drives me to represent my constituents diligently and move our state forward during these critical times. The survival and growth of northeast Louisiana depends on economic leadership in bringing new industries to the area and helping existing business expand as well as educational progress. We must set our sights high in order to achieve success!” said Senator Francis Thompson, District 34.
"Finding ways to certify more industrial land in order to create jobs for the residents of Ouachita and Morehouse Parishes is a priority in any economic development strategy. I sincerely commend Millhaven North, North Louisiana Economic Partnership (NLEP), Entergy and Louisiana Economic Development on their commitment to revitalize our communities through industry development and job creation. The Millhaven North certified site is attractive to site selectors and developers because the property provides assurance there will be no surprises during development. These sites are an exciting addition to Louisiana's certified industrial sites, and they represent a great job creation opportunity for industry,” said Representative Katrina Jackson, District16.
The Huenefeld family is no stranger to economic development. The family originally owned the pasture land that the former Guide Plant is situated on and most recently provided the right-of-ways for the expansion of the I-20 frontage road.
“95 years ago, my grandfather brought two of his sons to our area to set one up in farming. He had 11 children in Nebraska and Arkansas. Millhaven Plantation was available, and it pleased my father who grew cotton, corn soybeans and raised some cattle and hogs. Then came my turn, I continued with the same crops through good and bad years. I must admit that the best crop ever produced was when the pasture turned into the General Motors Plant. Now it’s my children’s turn to manage the farm in whatever way they deem most feasible, while I remain a farmer and agriculturist at heart!” said Fred Huenefeld Jr.
While Millhaven North was originally a working farm, today it is a “field of farms” hopefully nurturing new businesses and jobs. Please visit Millhaven North’s website, www.millhavennorth.com, to see conceptual designs showing retail and commercial applications of the property.