Some question if spec buildings are a wise investment

There are at least eight spec buildings in the Pee Dee and on the Grand Strand.

These are ready made facilities to attract industries to the area.

North Eastern Strategic Alliance (NESA) Executive Director Jeff McKay said the buildings are just what prospective companies are looking for to house their manufacturing businesses.

"They want to have something that has a roof and four walls up already, so that they can get into it and begin or expedite the process of manufacturing," said McKay.

He added one 50,000 square foot spec building in Marion County has sat empty for a little more than a year, but that doesn't mean it's not generating interest.

McKay explained, "While they're here, we're not only able to sell the spec building, but if it doesn't work, we can sell the property either in the industrial park or adjacent to the building. So, it's a tremendous drawing card and marketing capability.Have had a couple of companies that have spent a lot of time and a lot of due diligence on the building and for some reason or the other it hasn't sold yet. But it is drawing people to take a look at Marion County and the building."

There are at least eight spec buildings in the area. Many are still vacant. For that reason, some question if the buildings are a wise investment.

"I know the intentions were good, hoping to get businesses to come here, but it's been sitting here a long time. But it seems like an awful of money that's been spent. That maybe could have been spent to help the area in a better way," Jan Maillet, Marion County.

The counties don't foot the entire bill for the spec buildings. Energy cooperatives in the area also help pay for the facilities.

McKay strongly believes the spec buildings will pay off, and it's just a matter of time before they're occupied. He added several companies have already moved into some of the buildings in our area.

"I do think you're going to see some of these buildings that are occupied in the near future. So, I think the investment is certainly worthwhile."