Pflugerville pens incentives deal with playground supplier
Saturday, March 25, 2017
An incentives deal between the city and a Denmark-based corporation may be the most-watched deal yet when it comes to the younger crowd.
Kompan Playground Solutions will be outfitting city parks with its unique, modernistic playgrounds as part of an estimated $1.33 million incentives agreement approved Tuesday night by the Pflugerville City Council.
Amy Madison, executive director of the Pflugerville Community Development Corporation, said she and her staff competed against two other Central Texas cities and one in North Carolina to relocate Kompan’s North American headquarters from Tacoma, Wash., to Pflugerville.
“They knew we were an easy community to work with,” she said. “I think, ultimately, coming up with a creative way to give the incentives was a win for everyone.”
By Kompan moving its headquarters to Pflugerville by this summer and maintaining at least 20 local employees, PCDC will purchase $100,000 in Kompan equipment every year for the next decade, according to the agreement.
The agreement also stipulates Kompan must either purchase or lease land or buildings by Dec. 1 to provide for at least 15,000 square feet of commercial space. The corporation will also receive a $50,000 “relocation grant” after signing a lease for 5,600 square feet of office space at 821 Grand Avenue Parkway.
Madison said Kompan will most likely construct a new facility, since 15,000 square feet of commercial space is currently unavailable within the city.
Madison said the deal is particularly fruitful for the city as many playgrounds in its 24 existing parks are antiquated. Playgrounds at Pfluger Park — which will be the first to receive new playgrounds from Kompan through the deal — are 19 years old, she said.
“That one is way overdue,” Madison said of Pfluger Park. She added that the city parks department director will work with PCDC to assess which parks will receive new playgrounds through the agreement.
Jose Antonio Moreno Toscano, Kompan CEO of the Americas, said in a PCDC news release that choosing to move its headquarters to Texas was an easy decision due to its growth and economic prospects.
“Within Texas, there are very few areas that have the potential and attractiveness that Pflugerville offers from both geographical and economic development perspectives,” he said.
Pflugerville Mayor Jeff Coleman noted in the release how the agreement could bring up to $1.18 million in playground equipment to city parks and its contribution to the local economy.
“Our residents emphasized the importance of parks when they approved the parks bond in 2014, and we know that job growth is imperative to our city’s future,” he said. “This partnership with Kompan marks a great economic and community development success.”
PCDC will hold a recruitment job fair coordinated with Texas Workforce Solutions to help Kompan acquire new employees, and will support skill development funding to train its new workforce, according to the release.
The PCDC, a quasi-governmental agency, works independently to strengthen and grow Pflugerville’s economy through incentives agreements and other business deals. The agency recently penned an incentives deal with SISU Devices to triple the size of its facility on Royston Lane.
Mike Parker, Austin Community Newspapers Staff, Austin Statesman, 3/25/17, statesman.com