By Elsa Maxey
Texas Instruments shut down its site in Fort Bend County this year after having been an iconic mainstay for 45 years. The facility in Stafford shut its doors for good there and reports indicate that the company is supporting the city with redevelopment efforts as sale activities for the property site continue.
What’s good news is the announcement of an investment of $35 million to build a business and development center in Sugar Land, especially because there will be 375 people employed in a new 160,000 sq ft building that is planned for be completed by early 2014. The facility will be built on 7-acres at the northeast corner of U.S. 59 and University Boulevard in the commercial area in the Telfair master-planned community.
Last week, Fort Bend County Commissioners Court also voted to approve an agreement with Texas Instruments for a tax abatement. It is for 10 years, meaning that a 75 percent ad valorem tax abatement on improvements to the property has been granted provided that conditions are met. The facility would have a minimum appraised value of $25 million, and personal property of $10 million.
In the agreement, it states that the new site will be built to operate a research and development facility and that is where a workforce of 375 full-time employees will be relocated. In Stafford’s manufacturing factory, there were 1,000 employees, 500 factory employees and another 500 engineers and designers, who were part of what was called the digital signal processor arm of the business.
Texas Instruments is a Dallas-based semiconductor manufacturer. The city of Sugar Land reports that the new facility will receive a public incentive package approved by the city and the Sugar Land Development Corp., a nonprofit chartered by the city to boost economic development. Reportedly, Texas Instruments chose to build the new facility in Sugar Land due to many factors, notably proximity to employees’ homes, local amenities, and clarity of site-development plans.
“We are appreciative of the ongoing support we have received from Fort Bend County and of their efforts to retain TI within the county,” said TI Houston Site Manager Curt Moore in a news release from Sugar Land. “And we are very excited about our future home in Sugar Land and the opportunities this will bring. We look forward to forging new relationships with the business community in Sugar Land.”
In the city’s news release, Mayor James Thompson, who welcomes the Fortune 500 Company, said “Texas Instruments’ corporate philosophy and national recognitions such as Fortunes ‘Most Admired Company’ closely aligns with the city’s standards for excellence and lays the foundation for a long-term partnership between the company and city.”