Community leaders will be gathering at the site of a future employment center in southern Phoenix that will provide as many as 1,000 new jobs. This dramatic transformation from Merit Partners comes as an $11 million cleanup is well underway to remediate the environmental damage left behind by an old cement plant.

This socially-distant celebration will place from 12 pm to 2 pm on Saturday, November 21, at the future Merit Sky Harbor Industrial Park located at 7th Avenue and Elwood Street. This neighborhood gathering will feature a local food truck and a live DJ. Merit Partners will be there as well to answer questions about the new employment center that will replace the old cement plant.

In addition to the $11 million cleanup, Merit Partners is investing $100 million to create a new employment center of nearly 1 million square feet which will create as many as 1,000 jobs. Merit Partners is eager to meet with neighborhood residents seeking their input and suggestions as this facility starts to take shape. No zoning change is required. This project will be located along a new light rail route near the Rio Salado. It represents a renewed effort to clean up the riverbed and revitalize the area.

Indeed, the project falls within an Opportunity Zone, places that need economic investment. The area is an example as to why such zones were created. According to recent data from the Maricopa Association of Governments, the 85041 zip code saw more than 8,000 new unemployment insurance claims from March to October, which is among the highest in the Valley.

“This is a special part of the Valley. It deserves this economic and environmental revitalization. Merit Partners is proud to lead the way as we help restore the riverbed while providing local jobs. We look forward to the completion of this project and the opportunities it will provide, and we eagerly welcome input from our new neighbors,” said Kevin Czerwinski, CEO of Merit Partners.

Celebratory event

Who: Merit Partners

What: Southern Phoenix celebration with food truck and live DJ

When: November 21- noon to 2pm

Where: 7thAvenue and Ellwood Street

Why: To celebrate an $11 million environmental cleanup