With two highly competitive large grants in hand, the
Bedford County Business Center
The Bedford County Development Association secured a $500,000 grant from the Pennsylvania First Program and a $650,000 grant from the federal Economic Development Administration and is underway with construction on a 15,000-plus-square-foot addition to its existing 24,000-square-foot complex.
The center rents anything from a tiny office, not much bigger than a cubicle, to several thousand square feet to startup companies, entrepreneurial non-retail businesses and existing firms and offers a shared, state-of-the-art conference room, says Bette Slayton, BCDA president. It’s simple, but “this formula works for a rural Pennsylvania county with high unemployment and low average income,” she says.
Systems4PT is a business center success story, starting with a single employee. The company, which programs cloud-based software for physical therapy providers, eventually grew to 11 and outgrew its space “and we were happy about that,” says Slayton. Today the company is located at a larger facility in Bedford County and employs 30 and is growing.
Bedford Reinforced Plastics is another type of tenant. This long-established Bedford County company wanted a stand-alone sales and marketing office away from its plant. The center, Slayton says, was able to provide “a way to help an existing company grow its business here – and it has.”
The expanded center is expected to open this fall; BCDA projects 20 additional jobs within the next three years as a result.
Source: Bette Slayton, Bedford County Development Association
Writer: Elise Vider