Lowe’s is taking home improvement seriously in Iredell County, where it has been based for 18 years. Call it hometown improvement — a building/ supply streak.
“Having Lowe’s headquartered in Mooresville has brought incredible opportunity and growth in all areas of our town,” says Mooresville Mayor Miles Atkins. “An interstate exit near Lowe’s corporate campus just added two hotels. A renovated industrial mill near our downtown is nearly 1 million square feet and includes several national brands that are vendors for Lowe’s.”
Italy-based Fitt recently announced it will have its U.S headquarters in the Mooresville Business Park East and create 144 new jobs. Fitt is a garden-hose manufacturer that exports to 87 countries and had $233 million in sales revenue in 2019.
Corvid Technologies, a tech-solutions company with a customer base ranging from ballistic missile defense to cybersecurity to motorsports applications, invested nearly $29 million in 2018 to locate its headquarters in Mooresville near the Lowe’s campus, creating more than 360 jobs.
“We have an emerging tech center near the Lowe’s corporate campus,” Atkins says. “[Corvid] will be the basis for future tech growth in Mooresville.”
Iredell is one of N.C.’s longest counties, stretching nearly 50 miles from north to south. Statesville is the county seat; Mooresville is the largest town. Ten years ago, Mooresville’s population was about 31,000. Atkins expects that number to edge closer to 50,000 in the next census release.
“The growth has paid for itself,” he says. “We have not raised property taxes in 14 years, yet we continue to build fire stations, add recreational facilities and parks, and grow our core services.”
A $5 million fire station will be built in the Mooresville Business Park, and construction will start this year on a $19 million, 49,000-square-foot police department headquarters. The county lists 23 available industrial buildings, with manufacturing accounting for 15% of the workforce. Top areas include automotive parts, portable power, disposable food service products and laboratory equipment. Other top investments this year include the $1.5 million, 4,900-square-foot Hoptown Brewing in Mooresville and a $17 million Tru by Hilton hotel in Statesville.
“Lowe’s has a footprint in various locations across Iredell County,” says Jenn Bosser, president and CEO of the Iredell Economic Development Corporation. “They have been a strong community contributor.”
Lowe’s opened its corporate campus on 206 acres in Mooresville in 2003. It has 24 stores in the Charlotte metro region, including three in Iredell County.
“The town of Mooresville is growing at a faster-than-average pace, having grown by more than 25% in the last ten years,” Atkins says. “With growth, comes the growing pains associated with new construction, infrastructure development, traffic, and overcrowding. However, growth also brings a wealth of new amenities and ‘creature comforts’ that make Mooresville an attractive community.”
The town has caught the eye of large organizations such as NASCAR. Once nicknamed Race City, Mooresville remains home to Penske Racing, Robert Yates Racing Engines, Ray Evernham Enterprises, Kyle Busch Motorsports and JR Motorsports, Dale Earnhardt Jr. ‘s huge complex that also has a gift shop and tours.
“Businesses such as Roush Yates Advanced Manufacturing and Keselowski Advanced offer unique capabilities for a growing research and development industry,” Atkins says. “The town of Mooresville recently partnered with the Iredell Economic Development Corp. on project REVAMP, an effort to assist racing-industry suppliers in broadening their offerings into other areas of advance manufacturing.”
With economic development comes housing development. “Since arriving in our community, Lowe’s has been a strong community contributor,” Atkins says, noting population growth. “[There are] more than 10,000 housing units in the queue at this time. We expect growth to continue as quality of life and Lake Norman continue to make us an attractive place to live and do business. Although growing pains bring challenges, well-planned and intentional growth is good for Mooresville.”