ZANESVILLE, OH-Avon Products Inc. is having a 600,000-sf distribution center constructed on a 70-acre parcel in Eastpointe Business Park, which is one mile from Interstate 70.

A spokeswoman for the New York City-based Avon says the project’s all-in estimated cost is $117 million, including land and equipment for the new center. Construction should begin by late summer.

The distribution center will have the capacity for half of Avon’s sales volume in the US. It expected to employ about 500 workers. Avon has nearly $9 billion in annual revenue worldwide, but the spokeswoman didn’t have a breakdown for how much product the facility will handle.

Avon announced in January that it is restructuring and going from four distribution centers to three, keeping its sites in Pasadena, CA and Atlanta and building in Ohio. As part of the consolidation plan, a 375,000-sf distribution center in Glenview, IL will close when the Zanesville facility becomes fully operational in mid- 2010. A 480,000-sf facility in Newark, DE is expected to close in mid-2009, the spokeswoman tells GlobeSt.com. Neither the Illinois nor the Delaware center could be upgraded to handle the increased volume, according to the spokeswoman. About 600 employees work at the two centers.

The spokeswoman says Eastpointe Business Park was chosen for several reasons, including proximity to suppliers, availability of a large enough piece of property to construct the facility, the work force and incentives given by the State of Ohio. The Ohio Department of Development has provided a 55% tax credit for eight years, according to a press release from the department. Under the terms, Avon is to remain in Zanesville for 16 years. The Zanesville-Muskingum County Port Authority also is receiving a $650,000 in grants from the Ohio Department of Development for road work and infrastructure improvements needed for the project.

The 1,200-acre park is owned by Zanesville-Muskingum Port Authority. The rail-served development is marketed for manufacturing and distribution. Other Eastpointe tenants are Dollar General, Wendy’s, which has a bakery in the park, and Bilco Co., which just opened a 77,000-sf distribution center earlier in the spring. The park is a state designated “job-ready site,” which garnered $4 million from the state to help with infrastructure costs.

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