Polaris Inc. on Wednesday officially announced plans to expand its distribution facility in Wilmington, aimed at providing additional distribution capacity, expanding product assortment, improving delivery, customer service, and optimizing operations.
The 165,000 square-foot expansion will bring the facility footprint to 465,000 square feet, according to a news release from Polaris’ headquarters in Minneapolis.
The News Journal reported on January 5 that Clinton County Commissioners approved a site plan review for the project at 3435 Airborne Road, and also reported on January 7 that Wilmington City Council approved a resolution allowing the expansion.
The Wilmington distribution center will continue to support Polaris’ growing Aftermarket, Parts, Garments & Accessories (PG&A) businesses. This expansion will allow Polaris to grow its eastern presence and in turn better serve its dealers and customers.
“Polaris’ Aftermarket and PG&A businesses continue to experience tremendous growth and we expect that trend to continue. The expansion of our distribution center in Wilmington Ohio, allows us to leverage our incredible local distribution team and elevate service levels for our customers,” said Steve Eastman, president of Aftermarket and PG&A at Polaris, in the news release. “As we explored our investment options, expanding our Wilmington operation quickly rose to the top given the support of the community and the city’s proximity to our dealers and customers throughout the eastern part of the United States.”
The expansion will allow for both additional rack storage and new automated material handling technology within the facility designed to improve customer responsiveness and productivity. The expansion will create an estimated 20-25 new jobs over three years, according to the news release.
Jennifer Klus Ekey, Economic Development Director for the Clinton County Port Authority, said, “We are thrilled by the Polaris announcement today. This announcement is impactful for a number of reasons, including the investment that Polaris is making, along with the additional jobs that this expansion will be creating. We are happy to have been a small part of this process, and It has been a pleasure working with the entire Polaris team to expand their operations in Wilmington, Ohio.”
The News Journal reported in February that county commissioners voted to authorize an Enterprise Zone Agreement with Polaris Sales that would, for seven years, lighten by 75 percent the tax on eligible real property resulting from the project. Wilmington City Council previously authorized the same tax credit terms with Polaris.
Polaris had also considered a site in Texas for the expansion. Polaris’ Paul Eickhoff told commissioners via a virtual meeting last month that said the company likes the fact it already has an employee team here and has the land here.
An advantage to the Texas site was that it’s closer to a lot of customers and products could reach them quicker than from Ohio.
“We’re thrilled to support Polaris as they expand their operations in Wilmington,” Julie Sullivan, the Dayton Development Coalition’s Executive Vice President of Regional Development. “Their increased operations will help improve customer service while allowing them to diversify their product assortment and gain market share,” said “Their longstanding presence in Wilmington has provided economic stability and employment opportunities for the community.”
Polaris will break ground on the addition this spring with completion slated for spring 2023.