City, Chamber work to

Published 12:00 am Sunday, August 15, 1999

market Miltope building

By MICHELLE J. WILSON

Staff Writer

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Published Aug. 15, 1999

Both the city of Troy and the Pike County Chamber of Commerce are working to fill the Miltope building, which will be vacated at the end of September.

Miltope Corporation announced the closing of its Troy facility April 27. The operation will move to its headquarters in Hope Hull, which is west of Montgomery.

Miltope manufactures microcomputers and computer peripheral equipment for use in demanding environments, said Edward Crowell, Miltope’s vice president of administration. The Troy plant opened in 1985.

He described the company’s computers, printers and disk drives as being "ruggedized."

The 95 employees currently working at Miltope in Troy will be absorbed into the Hope Hull operation, Crowell said. This means no one is being laid off at this time.

Employees will work at the Miltope headquarters in Hope Hull west of Montgomery. Miltope is relocating employees who desire it, he said. They were offered a compensation package with a certain amount of additional money for each hour worked to relocate.

Crowell said Miltope has been considering the move for about one year.

"We had a cost study and were told we had too many facilities, which caused low revenue and high expenses," Crowell said.

The decision was made to absorb the Troy workers into the Hope Hull headquarters because the facility measures 100,000 square feet, he said. The Troy facility is 60,000 square feet.

Miltope Corporation owns the building, which is located at 1101 S. Brundidge St. in Troy. It is listed with Aronov Realty of Montgomery for $1.6 million, Crowell said. Miltope Corporation spent $1 million improving the building over the past two years.

The company’s plan is to sell the facility, but Miltope will lease the building if it cannot find a suitable buyer.

Miltope is interested in entertaining "any and all opportunities for the building," but is not negotiating with anyone at this time, Crowell said.

The company hopes to have sold the building by the end of December.

"We want to work with the Pike County Chamber of Commerce and city to make sure the right people get there and that the business interests are congruent with what the city desires" Crowell said. "Miltope has been a part of Troy for a long time and plans to continue to have a positive influence in the community."

The Chamber of Commerce is assisting Miltope in marketing the building, said Marsha Gaylard, Pike County Chamber of Commerce president.

"This can be an opportunity to recruit new industry to our area," Gaylard said.

Chamber officials have shown the property to prospective buyers four times, Gaylard said. They have not yet received responses from these businesses.

"It is a large piece of property with about 6,500 square feet," Gaylard said.

If Miltope cannot sell the building to a similar manufacturing firm, Troy Mayor Jimmy C. Lunsford said he would like the company to sell it to the city for a fair and reduced price.

Miltope bought the building from the city of Troy for $351,000 in 1985, Lunsford said. That figure was the building’s appraised value at the time minus repairs. The facility had come to be owned by the city because it was donated by the previous owners.

"We would like Miltope to consider donating it back the the city or giving us a concession on the price," Lunsford said. "We wish we could have maintained Miltope."