Nelson County Taps into Kentucky Product Development Initiative to Add New Build-Ready Site

Nelson County has been buzzing with economic investment for several years. So much so, that Kim Huston, president and Chief Operating Officer at the Nelson County Economic Development Agency, says the county was essentially out of land.

That was until the Kentucky Product Development Initiative (KPDI) came around. Through KPDI, local governments and economic development organizations can apply for funding up to $2 million per county that can be used for site readiness. This covers everything from due diligence studies, property acquisition, infrastructure, and road improvements.

Huston says it was the launch of this new resource that led her team to look into an undeveloped 30-acre parcel of land behind the existing Nelson County Industrial Park. Working with government partners in the city of Bardstown, Nelson County, and the Bardstown Industrial Development Agency for matching opportunities, Nelson County successfully applied for and received $630,000 in KPDI funding earlier this month. This grant will be matched by another $600,000 from local and county partners.

“The state’s investment in KPDI has allowed us to open the door to new investment in Nelson County when we had previously run out of available land,” said Huston. “I am excited to see what businesses plant roots in this new site and the economic impact they’ll have on the region.”

The funding will go directly towards infrastructure development, site preparation, and land acquisition to prepare the site for efficient development. According to Huston, the site will be able to support a 300,000-square-foot building to add to Nelson County’s diverse manufacturing ecosystem. Once complete, it will have all necessary water, gas, and electric hook-ups and needed infrastructure to get a new business running quickly.

“Efficiency is key for any business looking to expand or relocate. The KPDI program is a tremendous resource for Kentucky’s counties that is allowing us to increase our region’s inventory of build-ready sites and ultimately attract more investment,” said Clark Welch, vice president of economic development for Greater Louisville Inc., the Metro Chamber of Commerce and manager of the Greater Louisville Regional Partnership. “We are thrilled that Nelson County and several of our other county partners have taken advantage of this program and continue to advocate for sustained investment from the state.”