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'A tremendous benefit for Kearney', says mayor as 2 vacant businesses find new life

Two vacant buildings in Kearney are now getting put to use. An old manufacturing plant and the old K-Mart building will soon bring new jobs to the city. (NTV NEWS/ Ifesinachi Egbosimba)

Two vacant buildings in Kearney will soon be put to use, and bring new jobs to the city.

"We've been trying to market that building, which is the old Coleman and Pramac building out by the airport," said Stand Clouse, Mayor for the city of Kearney.

Mayor Clouse says Midwest Partitions now owns the old manufacturing plant and will use it as a construction manufacturing facility.

"They do prefabricated stud walls, acoustical ceilings. They're a great manufacturing company that does work across the region and the United States," said Mayor Clouse.

"We're going to start building walls that are going to be shipped out to Denver for assembly at a big 20 story building," said Jeff Nealon, who is helping renovate the building. “This is all furniture that was inside the offices over here, it's all going to go up for auction or for sale."

Midwest Partitions says the Kearney facility will staff 30 to 50 people.

“They're going to relocate some jobs and create some new jobs," said Mayor Clouse. "The manufacturing sector is strong, and this will just add to that particular sector of Kearney."

Mayor Clouse says closing the deal on the building took some negotiating.

"We sold it for less than the appraised value, but in turn they agreed to make some significant upgrades to the facility," said the Mayor, who hopes the new business will improve optics in that area. “They're going to be able to improve the look of the building in that corridor, coming in from the airport."

This isn't the only vacant building getting new life in Kearney.

"We just approved at the council the re-purposing of the old K-Mart building," said Mayor Clouse.

SRC Finance, the owner of the K-Mart property, wants to use the parking lot and building for multiple retail spaces.

Although it's too early to know what businesses will be moving into the building, Mayor Clouse says this is helping draw even more people into the city.

"Anytime you can take a building and re-purpose it, create new jobs, create new retail space, and create new opportunities; I think that's important for our community," said Clouse.

Midwest Partitions hopes to have the plant up and running by September.

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