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Pair of Companies Look to Expand in Lincoln County

Friday, June 10, 2005

Two plants in Lincoln County Industrial Park are poised for expansions valued at a combined $15 million. Under one proposal, the park’s 200,000 square-foot RSI Home Products Inc. production facility would more than double in size to 425,000 square feet. Meanwhile, the nearby Robb & Stucky Ltd. plant would grow to 320,000 square feet in a 140,000 square foot expansion. The Robb & Stucky project promises to add 10 to 12 jobs to the 25 employee operation. Employment at RSI also is expected to grow, but officials at that company could not be reached for details. Robb & Stucky, a privately owned furniture company based in Fort Myers, Florida, needs the additional space after opening three additional showrooms in Florida, says Craig Nesvik, chief financial officer. “We just ran out of space,” he says. The Robb & Stucky addition is planned for its Finger Mill Road distribution facility, which opened in 2001 and has 25 employees. Robb & Stucky specializes in furnishing and decorating second homes in resort areas. The company operates eight furniture showrooms in Florida and one each in Scottsdale, Arizona and Plano, Texas. Both additions may qualify for economic development incentives from Lincoln County. Barry Matherly, executive director of Lincoln Economic Development Association says RSI’s project could be the first scheduled for a public hearing, which county commissioners could hold as soon as June 20. Several details still need to be worked out on both projects, Matherly says. For example, Robb & Stucky will need to add about 7 acres to its 18 acre site, and RSI will have to buy 14.5 acres to augment its 25 acres, he says. “It would be great if they work out,” Matherly says. “It’s never 100% until it’s in operation.” The RSI project would expand a company plant that opened last year. That project boosted the company’s presence in Lincoln County to nearly 1 million square feet. RSI, which makes and distributes bath and kitchen cabinets and other components for sale by home improvement retailers such as Lowe’s Cos. Inc., also operates a 420,000 square foot distribution center in the industrial park and a 325,000 square foot production plant on Generals Boulevard in Lincolnton. Among its three facilities, the company has almost 1,100 employees in Lincoln County. Alan Lewis, industrial development partner for The Keith Corporation which owns the newest RSI building, says the company has long planned to expand that facility. “We have had discussions about doubling its size since the building was conceived,” he says. RSI Home Products is a division of Anaheim, California based RSI Holding Corporation. Choate Construction is the general contractor on both projects.

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