Lancaster County Business Leaders Praise Two Job Announcements

Written by Ben Allen, General Assignment Reporter | Oct 14, 2013 5:00 AM

Business leaders are praising the moves by two major international companies to expand their operations in Lancaster County, and they hope the region can build on the momentum.

An Urban Outfitters online distribution center is expected to bring  500 jobs to Gap.
Armstrong World Industries says it'll bring jobs to Lancaster after previously outsourcing the work to China.


Photo by Armstrong World Industries

In all, it adds up to at least 550 jobs and nearly a quarter billion dollars in investment in facilities in the county.

David Nikoloff with the Lancaster County Economic Development Corporation says he talked with a school superintendent who saw it as a chance to keep young people in the area.

"This is the kind of thing we need so that our kids have an opportunity to obtain jobs in our community, that they don't have to travel or leave our community to find gainful employment. So from the perspective of the school district, it's job opportunities for the people that they graduate."

But Nikoloff says Lancaster County must improve to keep up with the rest of the country. The Lancaster County Chamber of Commerce has joined the Economic Development Corporation to push the county ahead.

"They're raising questions about the educational attainment level in our community. What can be done to improve it, so we're even more competitive in the future. Workforce, education, those are primary factors we have to address to keep ourselves competitive."

Nikoloff says the county's educated workforce and location are the main selling points to attract businesses.

He adds about 20 other companies are discussing the possibility of expanding in Lancaster County, including some as big as Urban Outfitters and Armstrong.

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