Lévis takes strides to bring in new industries : 2015-2019 Industrial Development Strategy

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Ville de Lévis revealed its Industrial Development Strategy, laying the groundwork for bringing in new businesses and boosting industrial development in the region.

The city plans to invest $17 million over the next five years, with $12 million going toward road development and $5 million toward land acquisition, with a focus on the Bernières and Lauzon industrial parks. The first lots will be ready for construction in fall 2016.

“Current industry demand for developed land is 200,000 m2 per year. The total supply of industrial lands available is only 300,000 m2, which doesn’t allow us to meet the needs of the sector. Ville de Lévis has received 30-odd industrial land acquisition requests since August 1, 2015, but has only been able to respond to a few of them because land is in short supply in sought-after areas. Lévis would like to make 2,000,000 m2 available over the next decade to foster industrial development,” said Lévis Mayor Gilles Lehouillier.

“It’s high time Lévis adopted a strategy like this. Developers are clamoring for land and the revenue potential is exciting, to say the least. Paving the way for industry by developing new sites will allow the city to build up its industrial land holdings and stimulate economic growth and job creation,” he added.

There are three components to the Strategy being put forward by the city: technical and financial support for developers and businesses, development of new industrial sites, and development of Innoparc.

Component 1: Financial support for business

With the launch of DEL, Développement économique Lévis in March and the adoption of the Politique d’investissement et de soutien aux entreprises on October 19, Ville de Lévis now has the tools and resources to effectively support entrepreneurship and local development. Drawing on a network of some 80 partners, DEL will emphasize the region’s key niches to spur economic growth and job creation. A team of advisors is available to provide technical and financial support for businesses in the pre-startup, startup, growth, and transfer phases.

“With the recent creation of DEL, we are even better equipped to support developers and entrepreneurs who wish to carry out industrial projects here,” said Philippe Meurant, economic development and promotion director for Ville de Lévis.

Component 2: Development of new industrial sites

The industrial parks of Bernières and Lauzon are top priority

Determined to bring in new industries as quickly as possible, the city will invest nearly $17 million over the next five years to open new roads in the Bernières and Lauzon industrial parks. Strategically positioned just a few kilometers from the Pierre Laporte Bridge at the gateway to Quebec City along Autoroute 20, the Bernières industrial park is a prime location that provides easy access to eastern Canadian markets.

The Lauzon industrial park boasts tremendous load bearing capacity, making it an ideal site for larger businesses, not to mention the number of major companies in the vicinity, including the Davie shipyard, Frito-Lay Canada, and Teknion. 

Five-year development plan

Work in the Lauzon and Bernières industrial parks is slated to begin in spring 2016, in the following stages: leveling and extension of Rue des Riveurs Est in the Lauzon industrial park and a two-phase extension of Rue J.B.-Renaud in the Bernières park, upgrading of Rue Thomas-Power and Rue J.A.-Bombardier, and urbanization of the existing section of Rue J.B.-Renaud.

The city also plans to purchase more land in these industrial parks to build up its holdings.

The industrial sector: A key driver of the local economy

The 16 industrial areas and parks in Lévis generate significant spinoffs for the local economy. In 2014 they were home to nearly 750 businesses for a total of some 15,000 jobs, 11,000 of them directly tied to the manufacturing sector.

Industrial port zone

The city has earmarked the area east of the site as an industrial port zone, while permitting it to be used for agricultural purposes in the meantime. According to the land use plan for the former Desjardins RCM, the area was always intended for this purpose.

Component 3: Innoparc: A business innovation zone

As part of updating the current land use plan, the city will also confirm its intention to allow more flexibility in how Innoparc is used and to promote mixed commercial and industrial use based on evolving needs.  The move will allow the city to bring more commercial and industrial business into the Innoparc site—a process that is already well underway. A 2,000 sq. ft. two-story multi-tenant building is currently under construction as part of Phase 1. It will house a business center with shared offices and services in February 2016.

“As we continue to foster high tech research and development, the city would also like to open Innoparc up to some commercial and industrial operations, hence the new name proposed for the space: ‘A business innovation zone’” , concluded Mr. Lehouillier.

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