MONTGOMERY— Gov. Kay Ivey has awarded a $500,000 grant to help a Luverne business expand and provide new jobs.
The Community Development Block Grant will provide infrastructure necessary for Pepsi-Cola Bottling Co. of Luverne to move to a new location in the south part of the city. The move will enable the company to retain 79 employees while hiring 10 additional ones.
The expansion necessitates the 100-year-old business to move from its 40,000-square-foot building in downtown because of inadequate space to grow. Pepsi Luverne intends to construct a 75,000-square-foot building on a 17-acre site off U.S. Highway 331 and Richburg Hill Road.
“I know this is a bittersweet decision for Pepsi Cola after being in the downtown area for so long, but I am sure it is one that will greatly benefit Luverne, Crenshaw County and the surrounding area in the long run,” Gov. Ivey said. “My congratulations to the city and Pepsi Cola for this venture and this opportunity for even more growth in the future.”
CDBG funds will be used to supply water and sewer lines to the company’s new location. The city is providing $283,625 in local funding for the project.
The bottling company opened in 1915 and acquired the Pepsi franchise in 1939. It distributes more than 50 varieties of soft drinks, water, sports drinks, tea, juices and coffee and serves nine counties in south-central Alabama, including Crenshaw County.
The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs is administering the grant from funds made available by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
“This expansion will give Pepsi Luverne room to grow, create jobs and better serve its customers through improved technology,” ADECA Director Kenneth Boswell said. “ADECA is pleased to join with Gov. Ivey in this project.”
Gov. Ivey notified Mayor Ed Beasley that the grant had been approved.
ADECA administers an array of programs supporting law enforcement and traffic safety, economic development, energy conservation, water resource management and recreation development.
Jim Plott or Mike Presley
ADECA Communications and External Affairs