Belle Glade: Expanding our Horizons in South Florida
In March 2021, FINFROCK held a press conference at the Lomax Harrelle Pavilion in Belle Glade to announce the expansion of our manufacturing operations to South Florida. FINFROCK expects to invest more than $36 million in the construction of 140,000 square feet of manufacturing facilities and administrative offices on 94 acres at the Glades Gateway Commerce Park in Belle Glade.
“We have been working closely with city and county officials to help bring this project to fruition,” CEO Allen Finfrock said in a statement. Groundbreaking is expected this year, he said. On March 9th, The Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners voted and approved economic incentives for the FINFROCK, which has committed to creating more than 200 higher-wage jobs over the next 10 years. The total economic impact to the region over five years is estimated to be at least $242 million.
“This is the largest economic development project that the Business Development Board has facilitated in the Glades in 30 years,” Business Development Board of Palm Beach County CEO Kelly Smallridge said in a statement. “It will be transformational due to the size of the newly constructed building, capital investment, and new jobs created.
Embarking on a new chapter for FINFROCK
Known as the nation’s largest design-builder of parking structures, FINFROCK has designed and built more than 27 million square feet of parking; 300 garages nationwide; and one-quarter of a million parking stalls. In addition to parking structures, FINFROCK continues to design and build commercial, multifamily and mixed-use projects and will focus on building more of these in the southeast and southwest Florida.
FINFROCK’s high-profile clients include many of Florida’s universities, hotels, hospital systems and municipalities.
New jobs created through technology and innovation
“We are looking forward to expanding our presence in the South Florida market through our commercial, multifamily, and mixed-use projects,” President Bill Finfrock said. “Finfrock has already designed, manufactured, and constructed more than 40 parking garages in the tri-county area, but this new project will broaden our reach, allowing Finfrock to offer a competitive parking solution to a larger share of the market.” FINFROCK has a history of providing employees with a safe working environment, a strong benefits package, leadership training, and opportunities for advancement. We look forward to working together with our South Florida community in completing our facility in Belle Glade.
Providing Economic Relief
Prior to the pandemic, Belle Glade and surrounding towns had one of the highest unemployment rates in the country at 48.6 percent and the highest poverty rate in the state at 39.1 percent. While the median household income in the area is $25,873 (according to the Census), FINFROCK will offer a variety of jobs at several skill levels, along with opportunities for career advancement and additional training.
Belle Glade Mayor Steve Wilson said he is “overwhelmed” Finfrock will open in the city.
“This vertically integrated project will not only provide the much-needed job opportunities, but it will also have a much-needed positive fiscal impact on our community as a whole,” Wilson said. “We have been waiting for such employment opportunities at this site since the close of the former state prison.”
Expanding construction industry education in Belle Glade
FINFROCK will offer jobs at several skill levels, plus opportunities for career advancement and training, while also involved in educational programs to advance opportunities for students through STEM initiatives. FINFROCK plans to work closely with schools such as West Technical Education Center and Palm Beach State College, along with CareerSource Palm Beach County, to provide training and long-term career options
“People want to work. They want good-paying jobs. FINFROCK recognized the immense potential of the Glades. Their decision to locate here is the beginning of a tremendous economic spark for the region. This happened because of the strong public-private relationship between the County, the City of Belle Glade, our educational partners, and the Business Development Board. When we all work together, good things happen. Finfrock believed in these relationships, too, and we welcome them to the Glades,” said Palm Beach County Commissioner Melissa McKinlay.
FINFROCK will now begin the complex process of clearing the site for construction. This new South Florida facility will be within closer proximity to developers in Palm Beach, Dade, Broward, and Southwest Florida counties, allowing FINFROCK to offer precast/prestressed concrete design, manufacturing and construction solutions more efficiently and cost-effectively to local clients.
The president and CEO of the Business Development Board of Palm Beach County, Kelly Smallridge calls this deal with FINFROCK the largest economic development project that they have courted in a 30-year period.
FINFROCK is a private, independently owned company that utilizes proprietary technology to design and build structured parking, hotels, student housing, office buildings, multi-unit residential complexes, and mixed-use facilities. FINFROCK’s in-house architects, engineers, precast designers, cost estimators, quality control personnel, and construction managers specialize in design, manufacturing, and construction and allow FINFROCK to serve as a single point of contact for our customers. Lowering both cost and risk for owners, FINFROCK is the only vertically integrated design-builder of its kind in the industry. Founded in 1945 and headquartered on a 93 acre complex in Apopka, Florida, FINFROCK has been serving customers in Florida and select locations nationally for over 75 years. FINFROCK is also the recipient of multiple awards for innovation and design excellence.
About The Business Development Board
The Business Development Board of Palm Beach County is the official public/private economic development organization for Palm Beach County and Enterprise Florida. Founded in 1982 as a not-for-profit corporation, corporate relocations, expansions, and international trade. During the past five years, the BDB has assisted companies that have created more than 12,822 direct jobs with average salaries greater than $69,062, resulting in more than $777 million in capital investment to Palm Beach County and an economic impact that exceeds $6.87 billion. Additional information can be found at the BDB’s website, www.BDB.org.