‘Project Eagle’ renewable energy manufacturer could bring 6,000 new jobs to El Centro

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EL CENTRO — A manufacturing company is currently on track to open new facilities in El Centro, and with it, the promise of creating 6,000 direct jobs, according to Timothy Kelley, president and CEO of the Imperial Valley Economic Development Corporation. IVEDC is a partnership between private enterprise and local government, which aims to grow and diversify the Imperial Valley’s economy.

The announcement by Kelley took place during the Board of Supervisor’s regular meeting Tuesday morning, where an overview of current projects by IVEDC was presented.

According to Kelley, IVEDC worked with the County, Air Pollution Control, Public Works, the Imperial Irrigation District, and others to develop and upgrade a property that would attract an unspecified company. However, that company opted to build its facilities out of state. Yet, the upgraded site soon attracted another potential buyer interested in building an assembly plant. The venture is known as Project Eagle.

Kelley pointed to the new business to confirm that prior investment in the property was not in vain.

“The next project, Project Eagle, is on the same location because we were able to get this property up to the next level,” said Kelley.

The Board showed surprise when the number of jobs Project Eagle is expected to create was announced.

“What are they going to be doing to create 6,000 jobs?” inquired Supervisor Michael Kelley, chairman of the board. But Timothy Kelley (no relation) was hesitant to reveal too many details before the project was officially made public.

“It’s a renewable energy product,” he said.

Kelley did share that the company originally planned to only build an assembly facility, but soon agreed to also build the manufacturing plant on location as well, because the improved property could meet the requirements.

“We already had in place property ready to go, and that property is now moving forward,” confirmed Kelley, who also shared that the total capital investment for the project would amount to $1.4 billion.