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Bob Evans 100 adds jobs, truck center

At least 100 jobs will be added at AirparkOhio.


SPRINGFIELD — Bob Evans Farms Inc. will build a $3.5 million transportation center at AirparkOhio, creating at least 100 full-time jobs.

City commissioners agreed Tuesday to sell Bob Evans more than 10 acres in the industrial park near the Springfield-Beckley Municipal Airport south of Springfield for about $275,800. It is the first project in the second phase of Airpark.

The 25,000-square-foot facility will include fuel and truck service centers, a warehouse, driver lounge and more, according to the city of Springfield.

The jobs include 80 drivers, 10 mechanics and 10 administration positions.

The average wages will be more than $56,000 per job, for a total annual payroll of about $6.2 million. Some of the jobs will be relocated here from other facilities, including in Michigan.

The city will provide an incentive grant of more than $33,700, said Tom Franzen, the city’s economic development administrator. It has clawback provisions, providing for the city to be repaid if the jobs aren’t maintained through at least the end of 2013.

“This certainly is a wonderful company, with a great brand and reputation ... We were very happy to assist them in growing their presence in AirparkOhio,” Franzen said.

The money from the land sale will go back into expanding Airpark, including for roads and utilities. Road construction should begin this spring.

Construction on the transportation center will likely begin in 30 to 45 days, Franzen said, and the center could be in use by the end of the year.

Bob Evans representatives couldn’t be reached for comment. The Columbus-based company sold its existing distribution center, also at Airpark, to Millard Refrigerated Services last fall.

A Bob Evans spokeswoman said at the time of the sale that Millard would continue to ship its products, allowing the food producer to improve the use of its transport fleet and save money for other manufacturing projects. The new transportation center won’t affect that facility, Franzen said.

Bob Evans is a $1.75 billion restaurant and retail food products company, employing nearly 14,000 Ohioans, according to its website.


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