South Central Power Company has announced plans to consolidate three central Ohio facilities into a single location in the Rock Mill Industrial Park in Lancaster, with a projected opening in 2021.
Staff from the cooperative’s existing offices in Lancaster, Canal Winchester, and Circleville will relocate to the new facility, creating a combined workforce of around 180. The facility will be located at the intersection of Mill Park Drive and Dave Johns Avenue, close to the intersection of U.S. Highway 33 and State Route 188.
“Our staff and trustees studied our facility needs for approximately 30 months, and we determined that the best way to create long-term cost savings while providing outstanding service is to consolidate,” said Rick Lemonds, president and CEO of South Central Power. “We project that by combining our three central Ohio offices into a single, energy efficient building, we will lower maintenance expenses, office expenses and other costs, resulting in a building that pays for itself over time.”
South Central Power’s current headquarters, located off Coonpath Road, was first constructed in 1943 and lacks adequate space for the cooperative’s current operational needs. Additionally, the aging facility would need significant investments to sustain workforce requirements at that location.
A partnership with the City of Lancaster helped secure the new location on a 42-acre parcel owned by the Lancaster Area Community Improvement Corporation in an area targeted for new development. The Rock Mill Industrial Park also houses South Central Power’s new OurSolar community solar array, including more than 1,900 solar panels adjacent to the cooperative’s future headquarters.
“We are excited to welcome South Central Power Company’s new headquarters to the City of Lancaster,” said Lancaster Mayor David Scheffler. “South Central has been a part of the Lancaster community and central Ohio for more than 80 years, and we are glad they recognize the advantages of the Rock Mill Industrial Park as they begin a new chapter in their history.”
South Central Power is evaluating firms to assist with the architecture, design and construction of its new headquarters, and is committed to using local workers and trades once the project enters the construction phase. A groundbreaking ceremony will be scheduled following the selection of a contractor.
As Ohio’s largest electric cooperative, South Central Power Company serves more than 120,000 homes, farms, schools and businesses in 24 counties.