By working side-by-side with state officials, and leading with a ‘customer service’ mentality, SLC will soon be a regional hub for shipping giant UPS.
In one big check for Salt Lake City’s economic development “win column”, UPS has announced it will build a large regional service hub in northwest Salt Lake City–creating 1,500 good, local jobs and adding more than $250 million in capital investment to city and state coffers.
The announcement was made this week at the monthly board meeting of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) in Salt Lake City. Construction of the 900,000-square-foot facility is expected to begin in January 2017. It’s the first time in 30 years the company has green-lighted so large a regional facility.
At the meeting, representatives of both UPS and GOED praised Salt Lake City’s economic development team, particularly Peter Makowski and new department director Lara Fritts, for playing an instrumental role in securing the deal.
“It was clear, the city having a large presence at the table made all the difference to UPS and really helped our partners at the state secure this deal,” said Mayor Jackie Biskupski on the announcement. “I have made clear to GOED and others that when it comes to economic and business development, they can count on a strong and engaged city government—I’m so proud of Lara and Peter for getting this done!”
The city’s economic development team began meeting with the company in March 2016, offering strong support to the company, walking representatives through the process, and pledging to provide logistical support as the building process begins. Mayor Biskupski has pledged to create a more customer friendly city, saying in her Inauguration Address:
“Our city agencies will work together much more closely to promote a culture of customer service so businesses can focus on theirs.”
Salt Lake City’s place as the crossroads of the west also made it the right area for UPS to expand. The UPS facility will have easy access to the Salt Lake City International Airport (now undergoing a massive remodel and expansion), Interstates 80 and 215, and the Union Pacific Intermodal Hub.
For many companies, time is money, and the city expects the new facility will attract other businesses to the northwest quadrant, such as e-commerce firms, which rely on round-the-clock shipping and would value close proximity to a UPS hub.
UPS and Salt Lake City also “share a strong commitment to diversity, a culture of empowering employees, and a willingness to lead on sustainability issues,” she said. “UPS is the perfect fit for Salt Lake City—we look forward to working with them.”
The company is also well known for being one of the best places to work, providing meaningful employee benefits, and for encouraging professional development, said Lara Fritts, the city’s Economic Development Director. The 1,500 jobs coming with the new center include 1,170 part-time jobs, 136 full-time jobs, and 195 full-time, high-paying jobs, which were part of an incentive package offered by the state.
“These will be jobs for all people,” said Lara Fritts. “While we work to bring new employers to the city, we are very conscience that we need jobs at all levels, from good-paying entry level jobs, to high-tech and white collar positions.”
Without a doubt, an expanded relationship with UPS will deliver many benefits to the residents and businesses in Salt Lake City.