By all accounts, the Salem Business Park on Highway C has been a success with one business in place and construction beginning soon on two new build-to-suit, industrial facilities by the Zilber Property Group.
“It’s doing pretty well,” said Heather Wessling Grosz, Kenosha Area Business Alliance vice president. “Now we’re excited to have more occupied spaces. About half the park will be developed.”
The 65-acre industrial park, launched in 2016 with a partnership between KABA and the Village of Salem Lakes, has been home since 2017 to Vonco Products, a maker of flexible, specialty shaped plastic packaging for food, breast milk and hazardous medical and industrial materials formerly of Lake Villa, Ill.
Vonco Products President Keith E. Smith said that the move to the business park has made all the difference, with the additional space resulting in more business and increased hiring. He expects to have a 20% increase from 115 to 140 employees by the end of the year. Even with the coronavirus outbreak, he sees the company remaining in good shape as long as it can continue to get supplies as it exclusively uses domestic resources, he said.
“It’s been very good,” Smith said. “We’ve been expanding and landed new business this year. We wouldn’t have been able to do that without this location. Even before the coronavirus, we saw an uptick in prevention products and have seen a spike in infectious substance transportation products as well.”
By next January, Stabio North America officials hope to see completion of a new industrial building in the business park with 110,500-square foot of space. The company, now headquartered in Bristol, specializes in producing cold-formed parts.
The move will allow the company to add more employees and give it room to grow in a centralized location twice the size of its current facilities.
“We currently have 50 employees and want to add 35 in the next two years,” said Tim Cash, president of Stabio North America. “We’re just excited to move as we’ve been in this location for 35 years. It’ll be nice to get into something new.”
A second proposed 50,000-square-foot building also will be built adjacent to the Vonco Products building. Half the space will be occupied by Advent Tool and Manufacturing, Inc., now based in Antioch, Ill. The company is a custom manufacturer of thread and form milling products.
The remaining 25,000 square feet will be made available to other industrial users.