Area Development
{{RELATEDLINKS}} Advanced manufacturing has been defined as the use of innovative technology to improve products or processes — and that just about takes in all of today’s manufacturing. The use of these innovative processes improves products and, importantly, gets them to market faster.

With that in mind, many advanced manufacturing companies are looking at certifi ed or shovel-ready sites. This has been an advantage for MidAmerica Industrial Park, which is located just 40 miles east of Tulsa, Oklahoma, at “America’s Crossroads.” It’s where interstates 40 and 44 intersect, allowing next-day delivery to nearly a quarter of the U.S. population.

At 9,000 acres, MidAmerica’s BuildNow program provides shovel-ready sites ranging from small parcels to larger tracts with all utilities in place. The park also owns the water and wastewater treatment systems and carries an umbrella NPDES permit to cover discharge requirements for industries. MidAmerica has been designated a “certifi ed industrial park” by the Oklahoma Department of Commerce. Since it’s owned and operated by a public trust, red tape and fees have been eliminated and construction can begin almost immediately.

Among the park’s manufacturers are companies such as American Castings, Berry Plastics, RAE Corp., and Performance Pipe. Shawn Spears, plant manager at Performance Pipe, notes, “Our MidAmerica facility is the most effective in the entire system — for production as well as delivery. Often this plant is chosen to deliver product that logically should be delivered from another facility. The MidAmerica plant is so effi cient that even though product must be shipped further, it is still cost-effective to produce and ship from here in Pryor, Oklahoma.”

Spears also cites the “can do” attitude of the people who run the park and those who work in the support services in and around it. Dalton Babineaux, former president of American Castings, agrees: “A huge plus we did not count on when we located at the park was the opportunity to partner with other companies in the area. We are very fortunate to have such talent…as our neighbors.”

Among the park’s talented companies is Google, which operates two data centers there. And, in September 2013, Google purchased the 1.4 million–square-foot former Gatorade manufacturing and distribution facility located next to its MidAmerica campus.