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Santa Teresa continues to add industrial space as boom continues


“Reviewing 2020 is a study of contrasts,” Border Industrial Association (BIA) Board of Directors Chairman Guillermo Lopez said in his message in the BIA’s 2020 annual report on the progress it made last year in the Santa Teresa industrial base.

On one hand, Lopez said, Covid-19 causes supply-chain issues for many BIA members, and forced many “to implement new ways of operating to keep employees safe.” On the other hand, he said, “2020 was the most successful year the Santa Teresa industrial base has had in terms of company recruitment and new construction.”

“Between 2020 and the projects slated to begin construction in 2021, we will have built or will be building 1.33 million square feet of new industrial space in our Santa Teresa region,” BIA President Jerry Pacheco said. “The BIA is a driving force in making this happen, and in creating new investment and good-paying jobs.  This is the reason the Santa Teresa region now accounts for 60 percent of New Mexico’s total exports to the world.”

Here are some of BIA’s highlights from 2020, as outlined by Lopez in the annual report:

  • BIA member Franklin Mountain Investment completed its second 183,000-square-foot spec building, the first being fully occupied by new BIA member Expeditors. Blue Road Investments, a Dallas-based company, began construction on a 315,000-square-foot cross-dock, spec building. Combined, the two companies are providing Santa Teresa with some of the largest available spec space in the Borderplex region.
  • Xxentria and Cymmetrik became the second and third Taiwanese companies recruited to the Santa Teresa industrial base within the last three years. Admiral Cable, also from Taiwan, continued to construct its manufacturing campus.
  • Prent Thermoforming, a PPE company, purchased land to build its 120,000-square-foot production plant, which will start in spring 2021.
  • W Silver Recycling began construction of its 120,000-square-foot recycling plant.
  • The Santa Teresa Gateway Rail Park was expanded by 100 acres and another two miles of rail.
  • Union Pacific invested an additional $20 million in its intermodal yard to construct a block swap yard for unit trains.
  • The Santa Teresa Jetport completed a $9.9 million project to reconstruct taxiways and runways. The Jetport is now capable of landing 737-300 cargo jets.
  • The $47 million project to replace the asphalt on the Pete Domenici Highway from the Santa Teresa Port of Entry to the Texas border was completed.
  • The New Mexico Gas Company constructed a second natural gas line into San Jeronimo, Mexico to service growth occurring on the Mexico side of the border.
  • On the San Jeronimo side of the border, Sunrise Confections built a 200,000-square-foot candy production plant.
  • Planning and design on a highway that will run parallel from the port of entry and down into Sunland Park was started.
  • Doña Ana County received $1 million to do the planning and design of an overpass over Union Pacific’s rail lines that separate the Santa Teresa Airport Park and the Gateway Rail Park.
  • BIA continued work with New Mexico State University and Elephant Butte Irrigation District to push forward a desalinization plant in the Santa Teresa region.
  • The state allocated $1.9 million in Local Economic Development Act (LEDA) funds for BIA to build Well 14, and the project was successfully completed.

The pandemic caused New Mexico’s exports to the world to drop by 21 percent (down from $4.7 billion in 2019 to $3.7 billion) in 2020, Lopez said. At the same time, exports to Mexico only declined by 8 percent, which he said was due mostly to supply-chain issues at the onset of the health crisis. Despite Covid-19, there was a record number of commercial truck crossings in 2020, with an average of more than 650 northbound trucks crossing the U.S.-Mexico border daily, Lopez said.

“All the growth during pandemic proved how essential our industrial base is and what a force we have become on the border,” he said. “Even though we are not quite yet out of the threats posed by the pandemic, 2021 promises to be another successful year with all the new construction planned, and new prospects to be recruited.”

Headquartered in Santa Teresa, BIA is an industrial advocacy organization that focuses on improving the business environment for its members and the region. It consists of 125 members located in or doing business in the Santa Teresa region. BIA members represent more than 6,000 jobs and more than $1 billion of private investment in southern New Mexico.

Visit https://nmbia.org/.