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Work to start soon on Sharp Industries building

Sharp Industries CEO Brian Stork said construction will begin soon begin on the new Sharp Industries building on 10th Street in north Alexandria near Interstate 90.

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Ground work began Sept. 11 on the 18,000-square-foot manufacturing facility, which will fabricate stainless steel doors for agriculture and medical industries.

“There is not a lot of competition in the Midwest for this product and the owners feel it is a good fit for Alexandria,” Stork said.

Building construction will be handled by Dakota Steel and Trim, a Canton firm owned by Leonard Decker. He is also a principal in the Sharp Industries project with partner Melvin Waldner, the owner of South Dakota Industries. The latter company, located about 10 miles north of Alexandria, makes metal products such as school lockers and hog troughs.

Stork said the company had opportunities to build in urban settings such as Mitchell and Sioux Falls, but finally decided on Alexandria.

“Alexandria has so much to offer,” Stork said. “It has a great school and sports program, easy access to the freeways and land is available for expansion. The community rallied around Sharp Industries and helped to purchase the land so that we could build.”

Tom Bell, Alexandria Area Economic Development Corporation president, said his private organization put $30,000 toward the land purchase, an amount that included anonymous donations by several individuals. He did not know the total price of the land.

Alexandria also used $50,300 in grant funds to build sewer and water infrastructure to the new project. The money was part of $1.8 million made available through the state Board of Economic Development that was used for local economic and infrastructure development and jobs programs authorized by Senate Bill 235 during the 2013 legislative session.

Stork said Sharp Industries hopes to be in operation this January.