More companies are moving to St. Lucie County, bringing more jobs to the Treasure Coast. The St. Lucie County Chamber of Commerce is hoping this will lead to more people both living and working in the county, as opposed to commuting.
At Cheney Brothers in Port St. Lucie, business is booming at the food service distributor’s new 360,000-square-foot facility.
“We built from the ground up. This was nothing but a patch of dirt,” John Reisigl, president of the company, told WPTV. “Right now this facility has created 300 new jobs, and as we grow, as the area grows, we will add jobs beyond that.”
He told WPTV that they are expandable to 550,000 square feet and 200 more jobs in the coming years.
“We’re like, ‘OK, where is the growth in Florida and how can we do a fold-out, as we call it, from our existing facility,’ and Port St. Lucie was a great choice for us,” Reisigl said. “The community has been very welcoming.”
Cheney Brothers isn’t alone.
Their new facility in Tradition’s Legacy Park sits right across from a new Amazon fulfillment center that opened last year. It’s the third Amazon facility in the county.
“It’s actually been really nice, been pretty positive,” Ron Ellman, who works at Amazon, said. “Definitely there’s been a lot more businesses and all those houses getting built down that road. It’s cool to see.”
The St. Lucie Chamber of Commerce told WPTV that roughly 5,000 new homes have been built in the county just within the last year.
“If you multiply that by two and half people, on average, per house, that is quite a bit, over 10,000 right there,” Terissa Aronson, the president and CEO of the St. Lucie Chamber of Commerce, said.
Aronson said with all of the new residents, new commercial construction and more homes, the hope is that more people stay in the area for both work and play.
“When I first came to the chamber several years ago, we were seeing up to 70% of our people leave the community every day to go to work,” Aronson said. “We’ve made a huge double-digit dent in that population. So, we are starting to see more people live, play and work here in St. Lucie County. And that’s what we want because when they leave, they take dollars with them.”
It’s a hope that is shared by those who plan to be in business in St. Lucie County for many years to come.
“Friendly community, everything is brand new,” Reisigl said. “You’ve got new homes, you’ve got new businesses, new restaurants, and new gas stations. It’s just a fun, growing community.”