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VIGO COUNTY, IN-Pfizer is selling its 1,000-acre pharmaceutical plant and property here. No price was given yet, but the company said it has spent $300 million on the site in the past nine years for upgrades. CB Richard Ellis is handling the sale of the property, which is just south of Interstate 70, a few miles south of Terre Haute, IN.

The property has about 580,000 square feet of buildings on it, mostly manufacturing, with some office. The company has been making drugs at the site for 60 years, including Unasyn, Pfizerpen, Exubera and the food additive Natamax, but Pfizer decided in August to halt production at the plant. About 140 people now work at the plant, and will be let go when production officially ceases in the first half of 2009, a company spokesman tells GlobeSt.com. “We have an outplacement program that allows colleagues to bid on jobs at other sites,” he says. “If they leave the company, they will get a severance package.”

The large property has held more buildings, such as a veterinary medicine site, but those were demolished over time, he says. About half of the square footage left is within pharmaceutical drug-making standards, he says. The site was sold to Pfizer in 1948 by the federal government, which had been constructing a never-completed biological warfare plant there.

The city of Terre Haute is joining the county and the state to offer incentives to a would-be buyer, says Jeffrey Luebker with CBRE. These incentives are not specific yet, and would be based on the amount of jobs a buyer would bring to the community. He tells GlobeSt.com that the property is a good site to have. “Indiana has a very high level of life sciences employment, so that’s good for a similar company to come in,” he says. “Also, the site is in good proximity to domestic US markets, it’s within a one-day drive to 75% of the population.” He says it’s early to hear any interest in the property, which will be offered whole or can be broken up.

Pfizer is also working on the closure of two plants in neighboring Michigan. The company closed a plant in Holland, MI last year, demolishing the buildings, and has just closed the 2.2-million-square-foot plant in Ann Arbor. “We’re still marketing Ann Arbor, there’s been a number of interested parties and we’ve had dozens of tours. We’re still optimistic that something will pan out eventually,” the spokesman tells GlobeSt.com. The company still operates its largest manufacturing facility in Kalamazoo, MI.

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