EAGLE GROVE, Iowa - The Prestage pork plant that's being built near Eagle Grove is getting closer to completion, especially now that crews don't have to deal with any snow on the ground.
The $240 million facility is located about 6 miles south of town at the intersection of Highway 17 and 320th Street, and is expected to be completed by this Fall.
Once completed, the plant is expected to bring more than 1,000 jobs to the area in southern Wright County, as well as new businesses, a new hotel, and new housing to this town of 3,400 people.
Mickey Cooper is the owner of Eagle Grove Pharmacy, and says that the plant is welcomed in the community and will fit in with the area well.
"Wright County is very agriculture, and so it really fits in with what we have here very much. The communities around us are very ag-related, we're used to ag, and to us, it's no big deal," Cooper says.
The town has already taken some steps in anticipation of future growth. Last August, the elementary school began construction on a 13,000 sq. ft. addition in order to hold more students.
Cooper adds that the owners of the company care deeply about the community, and has met with them personally.
"Jere Null, their COO, lives here in town. He takes part in all the activities we have here going on. I just feel like they want to make sure it works for us as well as it works for them. I really enjoyed it," Cooper says.
Prestage is the same company that tried to build a plant near Mason City two years ago. However, on May 4, 2016, after months of strong vocal opposition and a lengthy public forum that led well into the early-morning hours, the city council voted the project down in a 3-3 tie. A majority vote was needed for that measure to pass.