McCain Eyes Property in Caldwell, Idaho

Published online: Feb 11, 2019 Articles
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Source: Idaho Press 

After plans to build a large facility in Caldwell, Idaho, fell through last year, McCain Foods USA, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of frozen potato products, is again eyeing property in Caldwell's Sky Ranch Business Park.

Last summer, McCain foods was considering a 17-acre property in Sky Ranch to build a nearly 164,000-square-foot facility. However, because the business was unable to negotiate with the city, the project was put to a halt. At the time, the project was dubbed “Project Russell.”

“At one point we thought we may have lost the project, and then when it was kind of resurrected ... that’s why it had a different name,” Caldwell Economic Development Director Steve Fultz said.

It wasn’t until the Caldwell Urban Renewal Agency bought a 20-acre property, located off Smeed Parkway near the Idaho Department of Labor, in September that McCain Foods began to show interest in Caldwell again, Fultz said.

In December, the urban renewal agency considered a letter of intent for “Project White,” now known to be McCain Foods, for the property. Urban renewal bought the property for $1.7 million from Freehold Development.

Now, nearly seven months after “Project Russell” fell through, McCain Foods is again proposing to build a facility. This time, it would be about 100,000 square feet.

Sky Ranch Business Park in Caldwell is seeing significant growth as businesses continue to locate in the area. PHOTO: Chris Bronson/Idaho Press

Caldwell’s Urban Renewal Agency on Monday will consider a resolution to “authorize the execution of the purchase and sale agreement with McCain Foods for the purchase of 20 acres located in the Sky Ranch Business Center.”

Two grants awarded to McCain Foods in June for the previous project may still be available if the company still meets the criteria, Caldwell Mayor Garret Nancolas said. McCain had previously secured a $200,000 urban renewal Business Incentive Grant for job creation and a $200,000 infrastructure grant.

The job creation grant, which awards $10,000 per qualified job, up to 20 jobs, would be awarded to McCain Foods only if they decide to build the facility and begin hiring people.

Because the business manufactures frozen potato, onion and cheese products — raw materials produced in the area — Fultz previously told the Idaho Press that Caldwell was a very attractive location.

Fultz said McCain Foods has been looking at other locations in Idaho, as well as outside of the state.