Hard work, vision pays off big at The Point

Published 12:00 am Friday, October 29, 2004

Tribune editorial board

Some people look a pile of lemons and see a relatively useless, bitter fruit. Other people look at that pile of citrus and see the potential to make lemonade.

Fortunately for the people of Lawrence County, a number of "lemonade makers" are among their ranks.

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A few years ago, a small group of visionaries took a good hard look at the former Allied Chemical and South Point Ethanol site. They saw something that wasn't really there, at least not year.

Those early dreamers looked past the scrabble grounds of the once-pristine facility. They looked past the buildings and structures long past their prime.

What they saw was the future. What they envisioned was The Point industrial park.

On Thursday, years after it started, all of the many participants - local, state, regional and federal - stood in the drizzling rain to celebrate the new facility was "ready to use."

Although The Point already has a handful of tenants, the real potential has yet to be seen. Infrastructure improvements are in the works. When completed the facility will truly be an economic jewel in Lawrence County's crown.

And, The Point reflects the strength and flexibility of the people of Lawrence County. A few years ago, when heavy industry began migrating out of this country, the county didn't see a mass exodus of people. Instead the people who call the county home retooled their lives, found a way to make a living after the industrial boom.

The Point shares a similar regeneration. The site has been home to a number of industries through the years. Soon the land will be retooled with new roads and new utilities.

Plans are in the works for continued partnerships between a number of groups including the Lawrence Economic Development Corporation, Ohio University Southern, the Ohio Department of Development, the Governor's Office of Appalachia, the Appalachian Regional Commission, the Huntington-Ironton Empowerment Zone and more.

The future looks bright for The Point so have a glass of lemonade and look for great things on the horizon.