Duke Energy Site Readiness Program a win for economic development, jobs in the Carolinas

CHARLOTTE, N.C., June 19, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Duke Energy has selected four properties in North Carolina and South Carolina for participation in the first half of its 2018 Site Readiness Program to enhance the readiness of the sites for business and industrial development.

The Site Readiness Program has helped prepare properties that have won 29 major projects in the Carolinas since the program started in 2005, resulting in more than 6,200 new jobs and nearly $7 billion in capital investment.

Through the program, Duke Energy identifies high-quality industrial sites and partners with county officials and local economic development professionals to develop a strategy for providing water, sewer, natural gas and electricity to the properties.

"Economic development is a team sport and we are a key position player - working with many local and regional partners in different capacities throughout the economic development process to achieve success," said Stu Heishman, Duke Energy's vice president of economic development. "We have a specific focus on site readiness, industrial recruitment and collaborative efforts with our state and local partners. The Site Readiness Program has been a uniquely successful tool for communities across the Carolinas to help close deals."

The locations include:

    --  Cherokee County, S.C.: The Revman Site is an 80-acre property in
        Cherokee County located on visible frontage along I-85 with easy access
        to two interchanges. This site has the potential to accommodate up to a
        1,000,000-square-foot industrial facility and is in a prime location for
        any company looking for quick interstate access."The Duke Energy Site
        Readiness Program has helped to take Cherokee County's site development
        program to the next level," said Ken Moon, deputy director of the
        Cherokee County Development Board. "This program has helped us know the
        strengths and shortcomings of each of the sites we have evaluated over
        the last three years. This has been critical in formulating a plan to
        ensure Cherokee County is a viable contender for new industries looking
        to locate in the Upstate of South Carolina."

    --  Lancaster County, S.C.: The U.S. 521 Lancaster Site is a 400-acre
        property located north of the City of Lancaster.  The property offers
        over 300 acres of contiguous, developable land with four-lane highway
        frontage.  A workforce of over 700,000 is located within a 45-minute
        drive time of the site.  The drive time to Interstate 77 is fifteen
        minutes and to Charlotte Douglas International Airport is less than one
        hour."The Duke Site Readiness program has been a tremendous asset to
        Lancaster County's economic development efforts," said Jamie Gilbert,
        director at the Lancaster County Department of Economic Development.
        "Several of our existing industrial sites have been evaluated through
        the program. Those assessments have provided us with critical
        information on the development potential of these properties and allowed
        us to better position them for future industrial development. It's
        really an excellent program."

    --  Guilford County, N.C.: The Gallimore Dairy site is a 75-acre property
        located in the city of High Point. The property offers approximately 65
        acres of developable land with highway access to Interstates 40, 73 and
        85. The site is situated in the desirable north High Point business
        market and is suitable for a variety of industrial applications. Drive
        times to the Piedmont International Airport and Charlotte Douglas
        airport are 15 minutes and 90 minutes respectively."We greatly
        appreciate our partner, Duke Energy, for selecting a High Point
        industrial park for its Site Readiness Program," said Loren Hill,
        president of the High Point Economic Development Corporation. "That
        program will assist our collective efforts to attract jobs and capital
        investment to our community."

    --  Guilford County, N.C.: The Greensboro Airport site is a 430-acre site
        that is owned by the Piedmont Triad Airport Authority. The site's size,
        run way adjacency, workforce, and access to interstate and rail make it
        an extraordinarily unique opportunity for the right aviation
        manufacturer. We are not aware of a similarly situated site anywhere
        else in the country, so this tract has wonderful promise."The Duke Site
        Readiness Program has provided strategic direction for marketing the
        Piedmont Triad International Airport's 1000 acre megasite and has
        strengthened our position as one of the top Original Equipment
        Manufacturer and Tier 1 aviation sites in the United States," said Jim
        McAthur, senior director of aerospace, Piedmont Triad Region. "The
        critical infrastructure at PTIA is now in place and provides the
        advantage of speed to market, an invaluable priority in today's site
        selection process.  We are thankful to Duke Energy and its team members
        for their support in this effort."

Duke Energy is working with major site selection firms to evaluate the four sites. Based on consultant recommendations, Duke Energy will collaborate with county leaders and local economic development professionals to develop an improved strategy for marketing these sites. Additionally, each site is eligible to apply for a $10,000 matching grant from Duke Energy to help prepare it to attract projects.

After each site's state of readiness has advanced, Duke Energy's business recruitment team strategically markets each of them nationwide to companies looking to expand or relocate their operations.

Duke Energy's economic development efforts are perennially recognized by Site Selection magazine in the publication's annual list of "Top Utilities in Economic Development." Through these efforts, Duke Energy helped recruit $1.7 billion in capital investment in South Carolina and more than 2,600 jobs for the state in 2017. In North Carolina, the company helped recruit $3.5 billion in capital investment and more than 5,200 jobs in 2017.

For more information about Duke Energy's economic development programs, visit considerthecarolinas.com.

About Duke Energy

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK) is one of the largest energy holding companies in the U.S., with approximately 29,000 employees and a generating capacity of 49,500 megawatts. The company is transforming its customers' experience, modernizing its energy grid, generating cleaner energy and expanding its natural gas infrastructure to create a smarter energy future for the people and communities it serves.

The company's Electric Utilities and Infrastructure unit serves approximately 7.6 million retail electric customers in six states - North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky. Its Gas Utilities and Infrastructure unit distributes natural gas to approximately 1.6 million customers in five states - North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Ohio and Kentucky. Its Commercial Renewables unit operates a growing renewable energy portfolio across the U.S.

A Fortune 125 company, Duke Energy was named to Fortune's 2018 "World's Most Admired Companies" list and Forbes' 2018 "America's Best Employers" list.

More information about the company is available at duke-energy.com. The Duke Energy News Center includes news releases, fact sheets, photos, videos and other materials. Duke Energy's illumination features stories about people, innovations, community topics and environmental issues. Follow Duke Energy on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.

Contact: Meredith Archie, Ryan Mosier
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