October 18, 2011
Good economic news is hard to come by these days, but here in Aiken County we’re getting our share this week.On Sunday, the Aiken Standard reported that MTU Detroit Diesel, which opened Oct. 1, 2010, is close to fulfilling its commitment of a multimillion dollar investment and the creation of hundreds of new jobs much earlier than expected. MTU is already employing the promised 250 workers and will achieve its $45 million investment goal by the end of this year.What could have taken four years is being done in just over one year. Then, on Monday, Bridgestone held its ground-breaking ceremony for a $1.2 billion expansion that will create 850 new jobs at its Graniteville location. Ground-breakings are symbolic ceremonies held more for a photo opportunity than anything else, but it does signal that work is about to start on the largest capital investment in the history of South Carolina, surpassing the Boeing facility being constructed in Charleston. And it’s the largest single investment in the history of Bridgestone Americas outside of the United States.It’s not uncommon for a company to parade into town with grand promises of jobs and investments, only those jobs and investments don’t match the expectations.Aiken County is fortunate to have attracted industries that have the ability business-wise and the character to do all it can to keep promises. And it says a great deal about Aiken County – our people, work ethic, lifestyle, support and resilience – to attract industries of this caliber.