Muskogee Gains New Business

Friday, March 30th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Donna Wells and her staff say Muskogee has been good to them, especially the manufacturing sector.
Their restaurant is near the city's industrial park and the growth there has forced the eatery to expand.
Donna Wells says, "I've always had a lot of regulars come in but the new people I asked where they work, brings the people in."
Her restaurant isn't the only place getting a boost from Muskogee's economic growth, the entire area is feeling a shot in the arm from fairly new companies such as Waterloo that employee hundreds of people.
There's a new company adding itself to the list: Dal-Tile, the world's largest ceramic tile maker.
Jacques Sardas says, "Our Muskogee Plant will be the backbone while Dal-Tile will build it's future for years to come."
The company is based in Dallas with nine other plants around the world.
Muskogee beat out 22 other cities competing for the business, the company's arrival has gotten the attention of many across the state.
"This is the largest turnout of any industrial economic development event in 6 years that I've been Governor and that says something mighty, says Governor Keating. Companies like Dal-Tile are filling in the gaps on Muskogee's outskirts taking advantage of city's port and railway.
It's looks kind of empty now, but this is where Dal-Tile plans to put its ceramic tile facility in the third quarter of 2002, eventually employing 430 people."
Mike Leonard says, "We are truly creating jobs for more than Muskogee but for all of Eastern Oklahoma and becoming that regional hub that I think everybody has wanted for a long time and I think it's finally starting to happen."
Longtime residents like Mike Leonard say the growth won't stop here.
In Muskogee, Jenny McNeill the News on Six.