GOSHEN — A startup RV company offering high-end campers is considering Elkhart County for a $12 million investment.
Alliance RV is eyeing property at the southeast corner of C.R. 17 and Beck Drive for a production facility that could employ up to 175 people. The family-owned company plans to make fifth-wheel and tow-behind campers using quality materials, according to Chris Stager, president of the Elkhart County Economic Development Corp.
“They prefer to characterize them as high-end vehicles with premium materials and construction techniques,” he said Monday.
Stager introduced the plan to the Elkhart County Commissioners along with a financial incentives resolution, which the commissioners approved. Elkhart City Council was expected to vote on its own measure Monday night, because the city and county both have oversight of the property.
The company is owned by Thomas Coley Brady and Ryan Brady, of Granger.
Stager said Alliance RV plans to build an $11.3 million, 132,500-square-foot manufacturing facility, and spend another $750,000 on equipment. It would additionally invest $100,000 in logistics equipment and $100,000 in IT equipment, according to the statement of benefits filed with the city.
“The project is anticipated to create up to 175 new jobs, with an average hourly wage of $32.31 an hour,” Stager said.
He said locations in Branch County, Mich., and Lucas County, Ohio, are also being considered. The selection of Elkhart County would depend on the city’s approval of financial incentives, he said.
Those incentives include a seven-year tax phase-in on the assessed value of the real estate and five years for the equipment. City Council approved a declaratory resolution in April and had the confirmatory resolution on its agenda Monday, along with a public hearing.
Approval was also needed from county officials because the property is in a county-managed tax increment finance district.
Jeff Smoke, director of development with Great Lakes Capital, told commissioners that 30 acres have been set aside for Alliance out of a 100-acre site that’s open for development. He said there will be a public road through the site, which is called 3 Creek Park.
If plans move ahead, construction would begin in mid- to late-2019, according to Stager.