On Sept. 27, Ford announced plans to invest $11.4 billion with partner SK Innovation to create the largest, most advanced, and most efficient auto-production complex in its 118-year history. Of that investment, $5.6 billion will be spent to develop a 3,600-acre manufacturing and training campus in Stanton, Tennessee, about 50 miles northeast of Memphis. The project, aptly named “Blue Oval City,” is where Ford will build its next-generation electric F-series pickups and advanced batteries.
Ultimately, the state of Tennessee beat out 15 other states to win the project. There are two primary things that stood out about the Tennessee Regional Mega-site, according to Greg Christensen, Ford’s Electrical Vehicle Footprint director for North America. First, the location offers shovel-ready dirt, meaning it is prime for development. Second, is the state’s capacity and willingness to educate and train a 21st-century workforce. In fact, a new Tennessee College of Applied Technology will be part of Blue Oval City, training workers in the specialized skills needed to meet electric vehicle-related production goals.
So why should you care as a real-estate investor?
1) Blue Oval City will employ just under 6,000 people – and it’s estimated that another 18,000+ jobs will be created in the area to support the site. Many of these people will need housing. The transitory construction workers building out the site will also need housing as early as late 2022. For these workers, renting in the area may be a better option than buying.
2) We expect home prices in the Memphis/Northern Mississippi region to maintain their upward climb due to accelerated economic growth, the shortage of available homes, and the lack of well-located developed land. If these trends continue, rents will rise, too.
3) Meridian has already secured 600 buildable lots within 20-30 minutes of Blue Oval City. We hope to break ground as early as the end of 2022 with product available for occupancy in early-to-mid 2023.
4) Ford’s investment is one of the largest the state of Tennessee has ever seen. No one knows for certain how many businesses will move into the area or be started to support Blue Oval City and the surrounding communities, but all expect the economic impact to ripple throughout the region.
The real-estate market in the Memphis Metropolitan Area continues to see strong demand as major companies, such as Ford, lay down roots, and others, such as Amazon, expand their footprint and create new jobs. Coupled with the trend of suburban migration, we are excited and optimistic about our growth, investor options, and position as the leader in the build-to-rent space in West Tennessee/Northern Mississippi.
At Meridian Pacific Properties, we make it easy to invest in residential real estate. To learn more, please contact Brian Conlon at 760-798-3095.