Portobello America can move forward with building its ceramic tile manufacturing facility in Baxter.
Mayor John Martin said city council has officially approved the annexation and rezoning of the property.
“That gives Portobello the opportunity to go ahead and do what they need to do for their permitting,” Martin said. “They’re applying for their air quality, groundwork, and wetland permitting. There’s a lot going on with that, so they’re in that process now.”
The Brazilian tile manufacturer will construct its $150 million headquarters in two phases, beginning with office spaces as soon as possible, while phase two will include manufacturing spaces.
Martin said a groundbreaking will likely occur next spring.
“I talked to the operations vice president and he told me that they want to proceed as soon as possible,” Martin said. “Of course, they can probably start some ground work pretty quick and I think that’s what they’re wanting to do.”
Portobello announced its Baxter facility in December 2018. Martin said he’s excited to see the project moving forward.
“It’s been a long journey since December 3. I never imagined that we would have as much that we had to do, as far as working with attorneys and our industrial board,” Martin said. “This is really good for Baxter and I know our board is really happy to have everything finalized at this point.”
The company has stated that the corporate office, manufacturing, and warehouse buildings will create approximately 220 new jobs. The facility will be located on the old Tennessee Motor Speedway site.